Tuesday, January 20, 2015

From one princess to another

Goddaughter of Awesome
circa 2010...I think.
I'm named after a princess. Not the most happy of endings for her but none the less I am named after her. My parents liked that it gave a nod to our connection with Russia through my paternal Grandfather and the images of me being Daddy's little princess.

Here's the thing, from day one I was taught how to be a self rescuing princess. No prince was going to come and sweep me off my feet. I was not to sit at home and fret and worry while a boy went off on adventures and did galant things. I was valued for more than my looks. Being the fairest in the land was fine as long as you were smart because let's be honest I need my brains because my looks only get me so far most days (which isn't very far at all.)

I have been incredibly weary of princess culture since becoming an Aunt and a Godmama. I'm worried about forcing them into a societal "one day my prince will come" foofy pink box. John and I try to expose the girls in our life to princesses who are doing their own things like befriending dragons rather than being rescued from them or wearing paperbags while they set off to tell off a jerk face of a prince. Plus we feel like they get enough of the Disney princess stuff from other people we might as well try to balance some of that stuff out. That's not to say I don't like me some Disney Princesses. Oh I'm a sucker for Beauty and the Beast, Brave and Princess and the Frog. I love Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty. Yes I am all about being a strong independent self rescuing princess but sometimes...just sometimes...I want to whisper the dialog from Princess and the Frog along with the blu-ray or dancing around my livingroom to "Be our Guest."

You know who else likes Princesses?

My goddaughter of awesome, Monkey.

She's 7 now (when did that happen?) and in grade 2 (when the hell did that happen??) and she likes Disney Princesses. A lot. She also likes geography, Phineas and Ferb, Gravity Falls, Hello Kitty, Hawaii, lego, swimming, the beach, cuddling, her Uncle John, her little brother (most of the time), her parents, me, drawing, colouring, reading....all sorts of stuff. But she does like Disney Princesses.

You know who doesn't like princesses?

I'm told some of the kids in her class. I'm told some of the kids in her class decided it was okay to make fun of her and call her a baby for liking princesses. I'm told they made her feel SO BAD about it she cried recently at the store because she wanted princess treats but she didn't want to be made fun of at school. She's 7 and was having a big emotional conflict over what snacks she wanted to take to school because some kids decided that liking princesses made you a baby.

Kids are jerks.
Big fat princesses shaming jerks.
(yes I know calling them that doesn't make me any better than them.)

I was sad and then furious when I found out. How dare those kids do that to her! How dare they make her feel ashamed of liking something! How dare they cause her such turmoil over something so simple as which treats she wanted from the store!! Ironically, I was wearing my "do you want to build a snowman?" sweatshirt when I found out about this.

So what's the point of this whole post other than to open the door to the ranty shanty?

I want my goddaughter to see it. I want her to see that it's okay to like whatever you want to like. I want her to see that I like princesses and I'm not afraid to put it out there for the whole world do see on the internet. I don't care if people think it's baby stuff. I don't care if people think it's weird or stupid or silly or dumb. I like princesses.

You hear that Monkey...it's okay. I like princesses, I was even named after one so it's okay those other kids are wrong. I think they're being mean and being jerks...just don't call them that. That's not cool. Stay classy, like the self rescuing princess you are, and like what ever you want to like and don't let other people make you feel bad about it.

Now I'm off to find some princess treats to pack in my lunch for work.





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