As I get older, I have a different viewpoint on most childhood stories. Specifically "The Fairy Tale Princess" story...
The lessons they teach are not always the lessons intended. For instance, while every princess story has the basic tenets of good versus evil, most little girls walk away with a love for animals, pretty dresses, and the idea that they will marry a prince who will star in their perfect future.
Let me be honest and say that the recent princesses Tiana and Merida are my favorites because they so blatantly don't need a prince and Tiana made hers work for it. However, even in the basic storylines - so many good lessons get overlooked.
1. Learning to make decisions for yourself
2. Living with the consequences of that decision
3. Fixing the mess you made
4. Accepting people for who they are (rather than who you would like them to be)
5. Knowing your part in the "evil" that comes into your life
Not to mention the biggest lesson of all: A real princess saves herself.
Husbands (Prince Charming!?) are wonderful. Mine makes me laugh, smile, and feel hope just by being in my life. He makes the tough days easier and the easy days a dream come true.
He also knows how to drive me insane, ignores things I think are important (at times), and won't "remember" to do the things I OCD about if he doesn't think they are important, too. Just. Like. Any. Other. Person.
I expected him to be magically unlike any other human being, of course, once we said, "I do."
I would brag about all the awesome things he did, thinking "That annoying stuff won't last, surely..."
Truth is, I probably annoy him JUST as much (maybe more) and that's just part of life. It's what we accepted when we decided to join our lives. Giving up on the idea of a fairy tale ending, however, isn't something I have wanted to do.
And I don't have to. You see, the truth is, they never show you "the next day" in the fairy tale or "one year later" because no one wants to see that.
Cinderella is furious because Prince Charming leaves the seat up and he can't stand the way she leaves her clothes strewn everywhere. Plus she finds out the kingdom is in debt from all those stupid "find a bride" balls.
Snow White finds herself in a castle of unloyal slacking servants now that the Evil Queen isn't there and her new hubby is only interested in travelling and hunting. He, on the other hand, hates all the bird poop everywhere and wonders why she can't keep the pets outside.
Ariel spends most of her time swimming and playing with the fish, singing to herself - while her darling husband struggles to keep his village supported with the new "No Seafood catching, selling or eating allowed" rule in place.
You see where I'm going - the fairy tale is the life story you travel to find one another. All the twists and turns to get you to your relationship. The rest of it - the marriage? That's your fairy tale ending.
Whether it's happily ever after or not is comepletely up to you.