I believe that appearances do matter, to an extent. I am not the most ‘attractive’ or ‘talented’ person, especially when it comes to choosing what attire I will wear for the day. If I have a choice, I would ultimately choose a pair of jeans and a t-shirt. But my youngest child will whine in vain, and this will cause me to forgo this ‘norm’ and wear whatever it is that she feels I should wear.
Now, there are certain items of clothing that I shudder when I wear them. And one is the dreaded swimming suit. The main reason is that it will show my deep, hideous scar on my shoulder. This was the direct result of an abusive brother and the inability to afford proper medical care, that this scar, instead of being a thin line, is a huge almost caterpillar on my arm. I wish I could say it doesn’t bug me, because for the most part it doesn’t. But every once and a while, in the innocent eyes of a child, they will call attention to it, which ultimately has the judgmental eyes of a parent. I have been asked more than once if this was a ‘disease’ or ‘tumor’… No, it is a scar. Plain and simple. I live with it everyday, my badge of courage, and proof that life just sucks.
On to the point of this blog, vent, whatever. I hope that I haven’t lost you, reader, since usually by the third paragraph I seem to be drifting away from the author, especially if I feel it bares no cause to me. And that is the Disney Princesses. I love them, I do. They teach us courage, and have usually pretty catchy tunes, that I often find myself singing. A few months ago, my family and I got the opportunity to go to Disneyland. Well, when I finally met the Princess Rapunzel, I vented to her, which made her uncomfortable, and she slowly scooted away. According to the Disney Movie, Tangled, Rapunzel was kidnapped and raised by the Mother Gothel. She suffered all sorts of mental abuse as well as some physical abuse towards the end. And (spoiler alert) in the end her hair gets chopped off by Flynn Rider (Eugene) in order to save her from Mother Gothel. Her hair, we are told, never grows back. EVER! Which is cool, since apparently Eugene has the makings of a fantastic barber, since he is capable of making an awesome pixie cut with a broken mirror, that most people can’t do with a pair of scissors. So you would think that Rapunzel would wear her hair in a fashion of honor, and that she survived this brutality.
NOPE!!!! Every doll, and accessory for Rapunzel is of her with long golden locks. Not the brunette, short hair! This is a great injustice, DISNEY!!! I mean, Come on!! You have Cinderella, blonde, Aurora, Blonde, even Elsa off of Frozen, blonde. But only one brunette, Belle! And her hair isn’t even short! Rapunzel was the option of getting more girls excited to be a princess, yes, but also to show, that yes, just because you have had some bad things happen in your life, it doesn’t mean you need to cover up, and blame yourself. This was the option to say, look, yes, this happened, but it does NOT define me! EVER! Disney, you blew it! I can’t even find a doll that looks like Rapunzel after she survived, and claimed her warrior status! You do have her have a cameo in Frozen, but no one recognized her since they are used to the long flowing locks!
Maybe this wouldn’t bug me so much if it wasn’t for the fact that I have very different daughters. And while two are in the ‘normal mantra’ for a Disney princess, one of my daughters, a brunette, finds it unappealing to have only one princess that she could even dress up like. Yes, Belle is awesome, but when her sisters have a plethora of choices, you kind of get sick with just one.
So this was my daughter who dresses up like Belle’s idea. And it is a good one too. She wishes, hopes, desires that Disney do a story, one story, that would appeal to everyone. You, Disney, have the commercial in which you state that every girl is a princess, prove it. Make the story, Princess and the Pea, but in it have all types of women be the princesses! Girls who have glasses, hearing aids, walkers, and wheelchairs. Girls with freckles, crooked teeth, short and tall. Have all the different types you can find, from every walk in the world. The reason why, is to give these, this generation of women, the confidence that they deserve to have. That is the greatest gift we can give our children, confidence in themselves. A confident child is more likely to learn, to study, to be respectful, and be a better person. They are more likely to eat correctly, and show courage in times of great suffering and tragedy… Although I wish that would never happen, I know better. That tragedy and hardships will occur. And these girls may not hear it at home. They might be bombarded with what media says that they ‘have to be’. Why not, just once, say that you are enough, you are awesome enough to stand up for yourself, and have the confidence to ask for more? That no one, should ever stop you from reaching your potential?
Just some food for thought.