Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, Tiana…all of those princesses, they get the happily ever after and then there’s the rest of us set up for failure by good old Walt. You ever wonder what happened after they married the prince? Me too. I’ve always wondered what made them so special. There are no actual princesses waiting to be rescued by the knight in shining armor. But you see modern-day princesses every day. One day some handsome fella chose them, to sweep them off of their feet, whisk them away to a castle, and they live happily ever after. And me, oh yeah that’s me the chick still scrubbing floors and plucking chickens to fry for dinner.
Walt Disney set me up. Why didn’t he make a cartoon for the chick who didn’t get picked. If I were him I’d write a cartoon called, “Queen Elizabeth Wasn’t the Only One” or “My Fairy Godmother Brought the Dress and the Shoes and I Had a Ball”. I am in no way suggesting that I have lived a life less desirable, only rather there is an alternative. When you’re a little girl someone tells you that you will grow up and get married and have children and live happily ever after. As if the happily ever after couldn’t come unless there was someone there to whisk you away from your miserable single existence and into your great awesome life. You were supposed to wait for this knight to come along with his fancy horse and perfect hair, and if you played a good damsel in distress, you’d be “rescued”.
The funny thing is I did that. For years and years I waited to start living because I had to share it with him, didn’t I? I couldn’t travel the world or go to see a movie alone because I was taught that he would come along and define me, add value to me. I mean no one ever actually said “Hey Melissa, make sure you look pretty today because Prince Charming may stop by and rescue you” but they said other things. Things like, you won’t ever get a husband if you’re this…or you will make a great wife someday, or you learn this now so you can be prepared for being a wife…good wives do this and bad wives do that. Don’t be a bad wife in the making….and then soon after you sprout armpit hair and start wearing a bra and you aren’t magically married, then they start asking what’s wrong with you.
I remember sitting in a “Singles Mentoring Class” and the facilitator who was a real life Cinderella, handed each lady a little cluster of pearls wrapped in tulle and tied with a delicate white bow. Each person was given a different amount of pearls. Each pearl was to represent something that you had never done and wanted to do with your spouse (whenever you got married)….I remember being perplexed for several months. I couldn’t come up with anything. I had lived such an awesome full life, there wasn’t anything I hadn’t done, that I wanted to do. She talked about this awesome list that she had made and asked God for specific things she needed and wanted in a spouse. At first I thought, gee that’s what I had forgotten to do, make a list. As I listened a little further, I just heard how she hadn’t actually lived! She was waiting for a husband to have a 5 star dining experience, she needed him to buy her a car, and put her through college, and rescue her from living in her unfulfilled life. Before she shared her experience, I envied her a little, she had the house and the white picket fence, the luxury car that someone else paid for, and a companion to share life with. And after she shared her experience, I KNEW that I wouldn’t trade lives with her for any mount of money. I realized I didn’t need someone to rescue me from my meager existence, because my life was brilliant. I do know that I need someone to fill the “double occupancy” on this amazing escapade. I’m not knocking her life, I pray she is Happier than she ever imagined. Her story is great, just different from mine.
HER YE HEAR YE, Mr. Disney and the rest of you. Life happens whether the Knight shows up or not. I waited for him and he’s late, so in the mean time I’ll dance a little, laugh a lot, sing off-key when I feel like it, and travel the world. Life doesn’t start when the knight shows up, he simply adds to the brilliance.
Each day is an opportunity to live….use it to the best of your ability!