Ever After...an AFTER thought

             I have wrestled with this idea of Princess fairy tales, Disney stories that are seemingly intertwined through so many chick flicks today, setting up unrealistic expectations. And don't get me wrong, I am most definitely a chick flick kinda girl, who some how cries in just about every movie. Take note my vulnerability in sharing this, YES I cry like a girl, I am pretty sure I cried in Despicable Me, that is how real I am being with you people! Ok this is not about crying, back to the point. What I am trying to say, is I find myself at moments believing this idea that if I am pretty, sing and dance with dwarfs then sit back and wait for this prince to come rescue me, I will in turn live happily ever after.

If someone were to ask me what my favorite movie is...I would quickly respond with EVER AFTER, you know, the one with Drew Barrymore (if you have never seen this movie, YOU GOTTA). Why is it my favorite you ask!? Well let me share with you.

First off, this movie connects with a very vivid memory of the first time I watched it. I was 10 years old and a couple month's from moving back to the States living in the Czech Republic. I was at my friends house having a sleep over, where we watched this movie, ate popcorn and had my friends older sister put some rad hair wraps on our hair (we were cool, what can I say). Since then this movie has never failed to make me laugh, think and at moments...as you can guess...cry.

There are a lot of Cinderella movies out there but this one captivates me on a whole other level, simply because it isn't like the rest.  The movie is really about, the real/raw story behind the "simple fairytale" of Cinderella. The main actress is Drew Barrymore who's character is Danielle, who in essences loses her father and grows up in a home serving her step mother and two step sisters.

I love Danielle's character. She is a hard worker, and she shows her strength through the way she provides for those she loves. She is willing to fight injustice by going and risking her life to bring a long time servant back home. Her heart for fearless adventures marks her confidence in who she is. I love her air of Independence but ability to still be vulnerable with the man she is interested in. She never tries to seduce or manipulate Prince Henry like her step sister does, and she never just waits around for him either. It seems as though she gets to be her self around Prince Henry, and that is what he loves most about her. Also I love that she rescues the Prince in the scene with the Gypsy's, which always makes me laugh.

 And here is the last thing that I find to be so intriguing...that instead of the Prince, saving her from the horrible and terrible bald man (ew, he really does give me the creeps), but in the midst of what should be her weakest moment, she in turn rescues herself. The scene pans out as Danielle walks out of this prison castle with her hair and clothes filthy, and as she exits the Prince rides up on his horse clean and sharp as a whistle. It is a contrast that sends goose bumps up and down my arms. I mean really!??!?!?!?! She did not wait around as this helpless girl, yet the Prince still meets her in this moment finds her captivating and then asks to her to be his wife. I know right..swoon...but really it is a remarkable ending.    

Of course this is all in a nutshell but the ending always impress me, and what I have found most inspiring is how Danielle lives in the NOW. She does not look to the future, plan her wedding, and hope for 5 kids or makes her end goal to be a princess rescued from danger. Her pursuit is to live. I love that because in moments it seems easy to plan ahead, to wait around for something or someone to happen. But really we are created to live NOW, not for tomorrow or for yesterday. A lesson that I am seeking to grow more in.

As Prince Henry and Danielle wed, they have a moment in the window area, the picture on the left.

Danielle says teasingly, "And you sir are supposed to be charming..." and Henry responds saying, " and we princess are supposed to live happily ever after."  Danielle exclaims,
 "Says who?"

The story teller ends this tale with this quote....
"The point-- is that they lived."


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