Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Princess for the day

Today is the five year old's birthday.  This time six years ago, she was an hour old, and I was bemused and wrung out and terrified.  I wish I had known what fun it would be, and how much laughter she'd bring. Sometimes I can hardly breathe, I'm so proud of the girl she is growing into.

 She had her Princess Party last Saturday.  She chose exactly who to invite, and they were all so lovely.  It was an unnaturally calm party, they were so well-behaved  - really easy for me, in the end! I can imagine her keeping these friends through the teenage roller-coaster years. With such kind, sweet friends, she'll be fine, I think. 

My writing energies have had to go into cakes fit for a princess...
The girls all looked so wonderfully tacky-princessy in their pink and yellow dresses. They talk about the Disney princesses as if they are classmates. The boys turned up as knights, though they soon got fed up of their costumes.  As for my boys, who would both happily have donned dresses and plastic high heels if I'd let them, Steve stopped me from buying them tunics online, and promised he'd fashion them a costume from cardboard, double-sided sticky tape, and sticky-backed plastic. (Too much Blue Peter in the formative years?)  The day arrived; Steve was away for the weekend, and the costumes only existed in his highly unrealistic imagination.  I had to ply the boys with extra pink sparkly birthday cake to make up for it.  I have a feeling that was just fine with them.

As for Bean, she floated on air the whole day, and on her birthday today she has been fizzy as shaken cola.  There's something about those shining eyes that makes my heart skip a beat.  These have been the best six years of my life.  I wish I could go back and tell that worried new mum I once was that it was going to be better than all right.  I wish I could tell her to ride out the colicky days and nights, the black panics, the hopelessness and tell her how it feels when her daughter slides a card into her hand that says 'I made this lait valntains card for you. I love you Mum.' I wish I could tell her that you don't get your old life back, ever, but you get a better one, and that one day there'll even be time to start chasing those dreams again.  

In fact, the six year old had so much fun being princess for the day, I'm thinking of trying it myself one day soon.  I'll put on the most ridiculously fancy dress I can find, accessorise it with every piece of jewellery I own, add generous helpings of glitter and then spend the day locked in my own personal tower, writing.  I'll wave regally from the window when I need to have a stretch, and I'll ring a bell when I need Steve to make a cup of tea or supply me with chocolate.  
I might leave off the pink plastic shoes, though.

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