Dear God, Can I Be Princess Elsa When I Grow Up? (And Bless the Earth and Peace and Everything.) Amen.

Dear God,

Please could I grow up to be Princess Elsa? I want to have superpowers. Especially the power to make snow and ice fly out of my hands. I love snow probably more than anyone on Earth, and if anyone would make a good Princess Elsa, it would be me. I promise to use my powers for the good of all mankind — and maybe a teeny tiny powder day for my snowboard — but mostly for the good of mankind. And bless the Earth and peace and everything. Amen.

I was a little girl when my father told me that as he got to be ten or eleven, and realized he couldn’t grow up to be Superman, he was pretty upset.

What did he mean he couldn’t grow up to be Superman? I was going to be Wonder Woman. I just knew it. Or a singing mermaid. It was a hard decision.

As I watched “Frozen” tonight with my kids, my daughter was especially intrigued. She’s already into all things “pretty” and “princess”. As the horse in the movie galloped onscreen, my daughter (she’s almost two) galloped across the couch. When the princesses sang, my daughter serenaded us. Her lyrics were gibberish, but the girl has lungs 😉 I don’t know if she’ll grow up to be Wonder Woman, but a singing mermaid may be in the cards for her…

It was easy to go back in time and find my excitement for princesses, superpowers, magic… okay… I didn’t have to go back in time. I’m kind of still REALLY excited about princesses and superpowers and magic. I mean, it’s not like I did an online search for “Frozen princess toys” after the movie or anything. And if I did, it wasn’t for me. That ice palace is enchanting! I want one. For my daughter, of course.

But what are we doing to our daughters and sons with all these superhero and princess movies? Are we giving them lofty expectations? Setting them up for total disappointment? Why don’t we stick our children in front of a musical about an aspiring politician who sings, “Oh I just can’t wait to be king”?

And if I’m an adult with a husband, four kids, a mortgage… and I still want to be a princess/superhero — what’s wrong with me?

The answer is absolutely nothing. What we’re doing to our sons and our daughters is giving them imagination and dreams. Real life mirrors fantasy more than we let ourselves see.

I AM the princess of my castle, I married Mr. Incredible, and we’re raising three chivalrous, courageous knights and one charmingly intelligent, resourceful princess. I can’t shoot ice and snow out of my hands like Princess Elsa in “Frozen”… but I do take my children to play in the snow on a mountain. I didn’t pass the genes of invisibility and super speed to my children, like the Incredibles, but I taught them to read — and a person who can read can do anything. I don’t have magic healing hair like Rapunzel, but Power Ranger Band Aids abound, and if those don’t fix it, I know where to find a “magic” healing doctor. I don’t loose arrows on horseback like Merida, but my daughter will grow up watching her mother be brave.

Parents have superpowers. We really do. They haven’t been left to rot in the forgotten dreams of our childhood. We’ve had them all along. Only we don’t recognize our abilities, because we’re too busy listening to the world tell us that life is not magical.

Parents create the future. There has never been a more amazing superpower.

Twenty years after my father told me how disappointing it was when he found out he couldn’t grow up to be Superman, I have news for him: He did grow up to be Superman. And he married Superwoman. And they raised a brave princess who recognizes the superpowers we all have within ourselves.

Now recognize your own 😉 And pass them on to your children…



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