Will You Be Watching the Royal Wedding?
Are you planning to watch the royal wedding on Friday morning? It is the "wedding of the century", (unless you count your own, of course).
It doesn't matter if you wake up at 5 a.m. or not, it will be impossible to miss the wedding and, most importantly, the dress. I have to admit that I am a little interested in sitting down with my 5-year-old daughter, who loves all things girly, to watch the wedding. This is her only chance to see a real-life Cinderella get married with all the royal fixins.
I wish we could watch and enjoy it. But I can't. I'm too obsessed with the idea that girls are being sold a set of values based on their looks and appearances, as related by Peggy Orenstein in Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Frontlines of Girly-Girl Culture and as summed up by the idea that girls need to learn that "they are not decoration."
Kate Middleton may be a perfectly sensible, lovely and warm person. I wouldn't know. I do know that she has really mesmerizing hair, an attractive smile, a stylish sense of hats and that she wore a see-through dress that caught the prince's eye. She hasn't said much in the last eight years in public which may confirm her intelligence. I know she is a "commonor"; though a commoner born with money. She hasn't really worked other than being the prince's girlfriend, which is understandable given the schedule of a young royal.
I assume that she is marrying for love, but also with a firm sense and desire to join the royal family. And I wish her well.
But I will not hold her up as some kind of princess fantasy for my daughter. In fact, I try not to hold up any princess, real or imagined, to my daughter. We read fairy tales and I am constantly shocked at how quickly the soon-to-be princesses agree to marriage. Last night we were reading the Princess and the Frog and one moment she hated the slimy amphibian and the next moment the princess is in a wedding gown and going off to a ceremony. I usually add in a paragraph about the couple talking a lot, instead of them just staring at each other admiring their looks.
I am not cynical enough to think that watching the royal wedding will mean my daughter will be wandering the halls of a British university looking for a prince. I think that smart women can enjoy politics and weddings, we can talk hard truths and the importance of shoes.The girly stuff that fuels our princess fantasies has a place. I just think that I want to temper the gravity of the day with an understanding that princesses are beautiful and have very shiny hair, but their job is hard and the happily ever after involves a lot of hard work.
So, am I over thinking? Will you be watching the royal wedding?
Want more chaos? Last year I wrote about forcing my son to have a giftless birthday, it wasn't pretty.