I just wrapped up my daughter’s 4th birthday party this past Sunday. As you may recall from my previous post, I had tried to plan every single detail for her special day. It was a Disney Brave party. My daughter and her friends got to sing and dance with Merida, do some archery and show off their muscles in a log toss (no, not a real log! A cardboard roll!), They designed their own jewelry in the Crafty Carver hut, played pin the tail on Angus, checked their aim in a haggis toss and captured some wisps. It was a great day and my daughter kept thanking me for the special party which was my favorite part of the whole day!
Later that evening after presents were opened and the high of the day wore off, the two of us were lying in her bed and talking about her favorite parts of the day. She told me that she was now a real princess. Merida had done a coronation for my little one and presented her with a crown. It’s no secret that my daughter is currently princess obsessed. As I’m sure many other moms of little girls can relate!
I let her indulge in princess glory with her princess dolls and movies. I’ve taken her to spas with packages called “princess specials” or “Royal day out”. So, lying there in the dark listening to her giddily tell me about being a real princess, shouldn’t have caught me off guard. But for some reason, it did. Was I creating a bad precedent? Am I the one to blame when I complain about her bratty behavior? Was it because she expected to be pampered all the time? I started to hear a few other moms’ words in my head. Moms who expressed that they love that their own little girls weren’t into princesses. They would say they didn’t want them thinking they were these damsels in distress who needed a man to be happy. As I let those voices fade into background noise, I focused on what my daughter was saying. The joy and excitement in her voice. She was happy. Isn’t that what was important?
The following morning, while I was cleaning up the kitchen after breakfast, my daughter watched some Disney Junior. This is our usual routine and quite honestly, for that 30 minutes, I don’t really pay attention to what is on TV. I can usually hear Mickey Mouse or Doc McStuffins singing. But I am usually never looking at the TV. However, that day, I saw my daughter jump off the couch and started singing, Hall of Fame by The Script. For the past few months I had been hearing Disney Junior play this song, but never really, truly watched the message.
You could be the greatest, you could be the best, you could be the King Kong banging on your chest.
She sang the words while watching scenes of her favorite princesses followed by little girls dancing, playing instruments, doing karate, swimming. I heard those moms again saying how princesses were such a bad influence on their girls. I smiled. My daughter turned her head and saw me standing over the couch, peering into the room. She smiled back and jumped to the middle of the room and sang at the top of her lungs.
You can be a champion!!!!
To my daughter, being a princess wasn’t about being a damsel in distress or finding Prince Charming. She saw someone who loved to read, girls who followed their dreams, the building of friendships and doing what makes you happy. After the segment was over, my little girl asked me, “what?” I smiled and nodded my head. And told her….