Everyone’s crazy for Kate Middleton soon to be Princess Katherine. Thankfully it seems Prince William has more princely balls than Prince Charles and he may go some way to protecting Kate from media and public expectation.
I was crazy for Princess Diana. My oldest friend and I would buy everything Diana and make our own scrapbooks of her for every stage of her engagement wedding and the birth of little William.. Her wedding was one of the best viewing experiences of my then young life (coming in a close second was Simon and Garfunkel Live in Central Park but that’s for another time). Diana’s death was harrowing when it was timed with a severe loss for my fellow Diana lover and her family.
My mother rang me to tell me Diana had died as I was walking back from visiting my friend in hospital. I still remember the walk. I didn’t cry. I couldn’t. Diana dying was nothing when faced with what my friend was facing. I didn’t cry all week in the face of tragedy until Diana’s funeral. I watched it from beginning to end. Hours of it and I wept until I couldn’t cry anymore. I cried for my friend and her family. I cried for the hours my friend and I had spent cutting out pictures of Diana and discussing her best pillbox hats and her Jenny Kee pregnancy sweater. It was so easy then, aspiring to be princess in pretty flat shoes and wearing necklaces as headbands. Shaking hands with sick people, breaking down perceptions about illness and create new understandings about kindness and empathy.
I wonder if Kate Middleton is an icon to young girls as Diana was to me as a child. Who do young girls want to be? Ke$ha, Taylor Momson and her masturbating on stage, a Kardashian? I never aspired to be a Princess as a child but I did aspire to have Diana’s elegance, sense of humour an grace under fire.
Younger girls could take a leaf from Kate Middelton’s book and aspire to her attainable sense of style (The girl has chosen flats as her wedding shoe for god’s sake, how much more smarter can you get?) Her lack of formality, deciding she and William will live without servants, cooks and maids and that she and her normal family have chipped in for the cost of the wedding. Love. It.
Meanwhile, I plan on watching the Royal Wedding, hopefully with my oldest friend. We will raise our glasses to the girls we once were with scrapbooks and a girlcrush, to lost loved ones and most of all to pillbox hats and flat shoes for your wedding day.