Two things I love dearly are converging and I felt the need to share it with you. This Sunday (October 28 @ 9:30 am EST) this American football gal will be cheering on her Philadelphia Eagles sitting amongst Brits at Wembley Stadium in London, England. The team I love is playing in a country I am obsessed with. So to honor this once in a lifetime occasion I am reposting a blog I wrote entitled “The People’s Princess”. My heart bursts with excitement one moment, then saddens the next knowing Princess Diana will not be cheering in the stands with her adult sons, their wives and her three grandchildren. But my hope is there will be a shimmering kelly green angel watching from up above.
Most of my lifetime anything British and my heart skips a beat. Best I can remember my fascination began the day the press began their obsession with Diana Spencer. I fondly recall the first story of a seemingly simple, no frills kind of gal quietly going about her daily life with a smile that would inevitably illuminate our world.
If it was in print, I read it. If it were news, I watched it. The more they reported and photographed Diana the deeper our connection grew. I learned we both grew up in a single parent family, loved being a kindergarten teacher and dreamt of being a mom one day! She was a real Princess and I always wanted to be one!.
Yes, it is true, I grew up dreaming of becoming a Princess. One of my favorite movies was Cinderella because I related to her. She did lots of chores, worked many jobs and never wore the nicest clothes-just like me. We both loved birds, animals and lived life with a glass half-full disposition. I, too, whistled while I worked, believed in fairy godmothers and the power of karma. Beyond all the odds she met a Prince. For me, Cinderella gave me hope one day I too would find my Prince, just like she did…and Diana.
The day Diana wed Prince Charles I sat glued to our television fascinated with not just the fascinators but the pageantry as well. As I choked down my cup of tea channeling my inner-Brit I felt I was a teensy part of history watching fairy tale become reality. Time passed and Diana gave birth to a future king. A few years later another boy for good measure. I carefully observed her determination to raise those boys to be kind, loving and empathetic men within the confines of the Royal monarchy and the suffocation of the press.
As the story goes; the boys grew up in the shadows of the castle whilst, her “fairy tale” marriage crumbled on the cover of every tabloid. To endure someone not loving you was difficult enough, but for every ugly detail to be documented for all the public to consume was just too much. But as I shamefully consumed it, I also wished privacy for her.
Eventually Diana bounced back. She threw herself into helping bring justice for those who could not speak for themselves. She had pep back in her step, her smile and style were better than ever and she found a partner who brought her happiness. It seemed the Princess found her happily ever after until that ill-fated night in Paris-a moment still far too horrible to believe. A life-ending car crash apparently fueled by the unrelenting paparazzi chasing her.
When I first heard this news my heart drowned in sadness followed almost immediately with a flood of guilt. I read those papers. I searched out those endless pictures, even just to stay connected to her in some way. Diana was proof living a kind life mattered and she affected the world around her one person at a time. Fairy god mother would have been so proud of her as she truly used her powers for good! Princess Diana exemplified the importance of being a great mom with strength, class, style and a sense of humor. I couldn't shake the feeling somehow I had some small part in her untimely and unnecessarily early death.
As I watched her precious boys walk behind her casket, I felt a motherly instinct to protect them. I cried knowing they lost the one person who always placed their happiness ahead of her own. Who would protect their privacy with such a fierce yet gentle vengeance? Diana would never hug her son’s wives, hold the hand of her future grandchildren or brighten their lives with her smile My heart broke for the loss they felt and the loss they would always have to endure.
Then came the news of her crazy, fun-loving youngest son Harry found his Princess, I cheered, felt the pride of a mother and, yes, still felt a touch of guilt too.
with a royal wave,
Moral: Use your powers for good-always!
A few little things you should know: I studied abroad in England. I quite enjoy a good cuppa English tea now. I’ll speak to just about anyone with a British accent. I own my own tiara and often wear it around the house. My newest dear friend is a English gal and her name is not Diana. I never married a Prince or lived in a castle; but it’s our happily ever after.
Editor’s Note: This blog was originally posted December 6, 2017.