She was supposed to be Cinderella.
This little girl of mine.
I’d dreamed of it since I knew I was having a daughter.
Because Cinderella was my favorite.
My favorite movie to watch. Favorite songs to sing. Favorite fairytale to read.
I couldn’t wait to play dress-up with my own itty, bitty, Cinderelly.
And when she was two, I ran out to the store as soon as the Halloween costumes came on display.
Sparing no expense, I bought the most dazzling Disney dress with little glass (jelly) slippers.
Within the next few weeks, cornstalks began to sprout up beside mailboxes.
Pumpkins spilled out of entryways and cascaded down front porch steps.
Ghouls, goblins, witches and ghosts materialized on front lawns.
And everywhere we went, people could be heard asking children what they were going to be for Halloween.
We were in the grocery store the first time.
An older woman saw my little princess eyeing the bags of fun-sized chocolates.
“Almost Halloween, huh?” she asked my girl.
My little one smiled.
“Do you know what you’re gonna be?”
She nodded vehemently.
The woman raised her eyebrows waiting, but my daughter didn’t answer right away, so I figured I’d step in.
Beaming, I began to respond, “She’s going to be-“
“A DONUT!” my daughter cut me off.
I whipped my head around and looked at her.
“Cinderella, baby. You’re going to be Cinderella.”
My little girl shook her head.
She was kind of obsessed with donuts, and we often stopped at Dunkins when we ran errands, so surely that’s what caused this donut outburst.
It kept happening.
Over and over.
Whenever she was asked. “What are you going to be for Halloween?”
She’d answer with the biggest smile, “A Donut!”
I thought I could wait it out.
That she’d change her mind.
But her response wasn’t wavering.
I even tried to change her mind.
Playing the movie.
Singing the songs.
Reading the books.
Yet time and again:
Finally, three nights before Halloween, I realized, this girl really wasn’t changing her mind.
She wanted to be a donut, so hell, she was going to be a donut.
And out to the fabric store I headed. I’m no seamstress, but I think I did ok…
I won’t tell you it didn’t hurt my heart a little.
You know, realizing that my daughter wasn’t going to be exactly what I wanted her to be.
But here’s the thing.
She’s so much more, so much better than I ever imagined.
She’s not meant to be forced into fairytale dresses or glass slippers.
She’ll shimmer with her own honey glaze.
Dazzle with her own rainbow sprinkles.
And be her own kind of magic…
All by using her own voice.
All by making her own choice.
My girl wasn’t Cinderella.
She was a donut.
And she owned it! 🍩