Before I was pregnant, before I knew I was having a girl, I was sure of so many things as a parent.
I searched everywhere to find the perfect little coming home outfit in a bright cheerful color. I would not give in to the pink, I would not give in to the ruffles. I would raise a smart independent girl like my mom had. I would not spank, I would balance a life as a working mom. More than anything, I would not let those damn princesses in to my house.
I was smug as I saw them invade my niece's life. I wasn't going to give in like that, oh no, not me. I was better than that.
What I didn't realize, is that the princess mafia always wins.
The start them young, younger than any other cosa nostra. The sneak up on you when you least expect it. Their indoctrinations are made subtlety, with sprinkle donuts and twirling skirts. Who doesn't love to twirl you think. A little twirling never hurt.
Before you know it though, the mean girls are in the gang, and they're making sure everyone knows who is in charge. Do you know the secret word to get in to play with us. We're not telling, but you'd better know your princesses.
So you let them in. You let them in through birthdays and little things here and there. You let them in because you knew what it was like to be different to be an outcast. Girls who like dinosaurs don't get invited to the tea parties. Boys who make shooters at girls instead of acknowledging that dinosaurs are awesome don't help. The marketing department at Disney has won.
What they don't know is I have a secret weapon. Princesses can carry swords, and always wear a helmet to protect their heads. Princesses can solve problems and dig up dinosaurs and still wear the twirling skirts. Princesses don't need princes, and princesses can marry other princesses. Princesses can save the world.