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Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Cinderella Redux

So, since my previous post on princesses, I've had ample opportunity for further reflections regarding Cinderella. And, upon further reflection, I want a new role model.

I still like that she teaches patience, kindness, and hard work.

I do not like that she stays in a bad situation waiting for something to change.

Earlier today, I found myself on the receiving end of some resentment. I have real sympathy for people who aren't happy. I also have little patience for people who have it in their power to change their lives and simply don't. I've been unhappy. I found I had the power to change my life, and I've changed it.

As a friend once put it: follow your happy. Your happy might not look like mine. I may not get it at all! But if it's yours, follow it.

Cinderella should follow her happy. Aren't there shops or restaurants or laundries in that tiny kingdom? Wouldn't any good business owner be happy to have her? Here's my proposed revision:

Cinderella leaves her stepmother's house. She goes to work in a glass shop. The proprietor probably looks like Gepetto. When the invitation to the ball arrives, he makes Cinderella the glass slippers. Maybe we can find room for the fairy godmother. (I'm not totally without feeling!) For drama we can find some reason she has to be back at midnight. More drama: the step family could kidnap her out of jealousy; then we still get our heart-tugging moment with the mice, the key, and the run down the stairs after the Duke.

She still lives happily ever after. She's still a princess, just one with the guts to follow her happy.

3 comments:

  1. I'm with you - people need to follow their happy! I get so tired of hearing people whine and complain about their situations. My parents moved to the US in their early 30s, not speaking English, not benefiting from the great US educational system and they have made a great place for themselves through hard work as business owners. It took trial and error and risk, but they did it and I'm very proud of that.

    As for Cinderella, you know I once said I was boycotting Disney forever because there are so few strong female mother figures - they are usually stepmothers or evil witches and so forth. Of course 2 weeks after I made that declaration I won a trip to Disney! We're going this month and I'm sure we'll have a ball (no pun intended).

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  2. I seem to remember you saying that about Disney. Let me know when you settle your itinerary at Disney. Maybe we can pop over & see you! :)

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  3. Love this. Struggling with princesses at our house too -- my daughter is 3.5. I'm reading "Cinderella Ate My Daughter" right now and it's not making me feel any better.

    For what it's worth (and at the risk of seeming like a shameless blog plug), you might like these books: http://myconvertiblelife.blogspot.com/2010/04/fridays-five-strong-girl-books.html

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