A year ago I was ready to legally adopt Belle. I knew all the songs to Beauty & The Beast and I secretly had a crush on Gaston. When our daughter turned four, I searched all over Charlotte to find the best Belle look-alike and invited her to attend the big birthday party. At one point, our wannabe Belle even begged us to paint her room yellow. We almost fell for it. Almost.
Suddenly, it was all over. Sutton and Belle broke up. My fickle four-year old quickly moved on to Strawberry Shortcake. Thank Goodness this obsession only lasted a few weeks. Have you ever smelled a Strawberry Shortcake doll? She reeks of bubble gum and strawberry compote, plus her accessories rival the annoyance of Polly Pocket (damn that small diva). What did Strawberry Shortcake have that Belle didn’t? Sure, she smelled like candy and the 80’s where good years for her, but Belle was so lovely and I had already grown to adore her.
It took me time to heal from the loss of Belle, but I did. I understand, kids go through phases. The latest craze in our house are My Little Ponies. I’m reluctantly learning all their names and character traits (or “cutie marks” for those of you in the know). I’ve discovered “Princess Celestia” is the ruler of “Ponyville”, but I’m nervous to get to know her. Each time I commit to a relationship it ends up disappointing me. Don’t even get me started on the devastating and unfulfilling Little Einstein run. I will never know where those crazy kids are off to next and I still wonder if Big Jet defeats Rocket. But, I digress . . .
Point is, when kids go through phases they drag their parents along with them. We live and breathe a character, toy, or show and then, just as quickly as it arrived, it’s gone symbolizing a transition into an entirely new age and phase.
I recently had to pack away part of my daughters Belle collection to make room for the My Little Ponies. It was a tough moment. I loved watching Sutton love Belle and now it was over. As I tucked that yellow adorned Princess in a box for storage I couldn’t help but think about the good times we had together. Memories flooded over me and I struggled to shut the lid on our sweet Belle. She represents so much and just like any “first love”, I’m not sure I will ever fully be over her.