As any young girl growing up, I was in love with the Disney Princess. They were everything I wanted to be, everything I wasn’t. And there was one particular princess that held my heart hostage: Aurora.
Aurora was the daughter of a king and queen whom had waiting a long time for a child. During the gathering to celebrate Aurora’s christening, we meet the three good fairies, all of whom want to bestow a gift to Aurora. Flora gives the princess beauty, Fauna gives the gift of beautiful song, but before Merryweather can present her gift, Maleficent shows up angry because she was not invited to the shin dig, and bestows Aurora the gift of death upon her 16th birthday via pricking her finger on a spinning wheel. Left with no other choice, Merryweather gives the gift of sleep to counteract Maleficent’s evil spell. The fairies then take Aurora in secret and raise her for the next 16 years.
Before we get carried away with a summary of a film that we have all hopefully seen (because it is a beautiful work of art that everyone should see), let’s take a look at what my young self was actually admiring. Aurora was a baby when Flora and Fauna presented their gifts of beauty and song. Why anyone would think that a newborn baby would need beauty is beyond me (this is the older, more wise me), but song I can understand. However, I know that when I was a child and for most of my adolescence, I would have given anything to have had fairies who could do such wonderful things for me at the wave of a christening wand. You see, unlike me in my adolescence (and actually unlike most humans in their adolescences), Aurora and her future hubby-to-be Prince Phillip seemed to have passed puberty with flying colors, without so much as a hiccup in their singing or a trip in their dancing. Talk about setting up unrealistic expectations. Ha. Speaking of unrealistic expectations: love at first sight. Again. Well, when a lady is gifted with the gift of dragon-slaying-beauty, I can’t imagine too many reasons why Phillip wouldn’t fall in love with Aurora instantly and battle to the death for her. If only we could all be so fortunate.
Aurora inevitably succumbs to Maleficent’s spell, pricks her finger and spends the rest of the film asleep, awaiting true love’s kiss to wake her. Meanwhile, Phillip does all the work (with the assistance of the fairies, of course), escaping the dungeons, slaying Maleficent in dragon form, and finally climbing the tower to kiss Aurora, thus waking the whole kingdom from its slumber, and Aurora and Phillip dance into the clouds for their happy ending.
Boy, what I role model I had. A princess who waited to be rescued, and relied on her beauty to win the heart of her partner…on the other hand, it’s not as if Aurora was an unkind person. In fact, she showed a lot of affection and trust to the three women who raised her without question. Not to mention, she trusted herself, and her heart when it came to the matter of love, which is a lot more than I can say for myself, at least, as I have let doubt in on numerous occasions. It takes a strong mind, heart and soul to trust the way Aurora does. And for that I continue to admire her to this day.
Over the years I may have lost my rose colored glasses, no longer willing to accept the notion that there is love at first sight, or that there can be fairies who can make you beautiful at the wave of a wand. However, I’ve managed to keep my love for Aurora close. It may not be the love I had for her from when I was a child, but she still helps me believe that true love conquers all.