My daughter is obsessed with tutus, princess dresses, and fairy wings. The other day we went to a friend’s house and the first thing she whipped out of the closet was a ballet pink tutu. I looked at my friend,
“She is obsessed with tutus,” I shrugged apologetically.
“That makes sense, because so is her mother,” she responded. It took me a second to realize that she was teasing me.
My daughter has taken to calling herself ‘Princess Emma.’ We haven’t really introduced much about princesses to her, but they are everywhere in children’s programming. Even just watching The Wiggles: they sing songs about Sleeping Beauty and nursery rhymes. I haven’t avoided fairy tales and nursery rhymes because that seems a bit extreme, and quite frankly there must be something to them because they haven’t gone away. There must be something in tales of princes and princesses that clicks in our archetypal cores because wouldn’t a culture that favors the ‘new,’ like our own, have tossed them out by now? But they are still here.
Last week she was running around in an over large princess dress, it was falling off her shoulders so she was running with her little arms akimbo to keep it up. With her floppy toddler run, tiny body, crooked dress, and awkward arm position she looked far from regal. Adorable? Yes. Regal? Hardly.
I have taken to calling her ‘Princess Peanut.’ The name just seemed to fit. Had you told me that I would be referring to my female child as a princess I would have told you that no such thing would ever leave my lips. The name occurred to me the other night, while she was running around in that too big pink and green dress, and as the words spilled out of my mouth she veritably vibrated with joy.
“Yeah, I’m Princess Peanut,” came out of grinning lips.
I think I shall just take her where she is, she likes dressing up, and to be completely honest so did I. If I had fairy wings and a tutu as a child I would have worn them a lot. Come to think of it I did have a tutu; I think I didn’t wear the yellow frilly concoction too often because it was itchy. This is what she likes, this is where she is. Should I encourage it by buying ‘princess’ merchandise? I don’t know. I think in a home where her father already throws things at her so ‘she won’t be afraid of the ball later,’ and a mom who refuses to do ALL the housework I think a true princess attitude won’t last.
The belief that she is beautiful and powerful? I can get behind that.