Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Cinderella's Shoes

If I were a Disney princess, I'd be Cinderella. You know the old Disney tune the mice sung about this ash-covered princess, always busy:
"Cinderelly, Cinderelly
Night and day it's Cinderelly
Make the fire, fix the breakfast
Wash the dishes, do the mopping
And the sweeping and the dusting
They always keep her hopping..."
The only thing is, I have no step-sisters keeping me hopping. It's just me, all me. I keep me hopping. In fact, early in my marriage when my husband and I met with a counselor, he asked us about what we wanted to do on center stage. Everyone, he said, has a center stage. Think of it as your career or personal goals. What are you doing on the stage? Is is the role you were meant to lead?

Me? Well, he said, I wasn't even near the stage. I was off scrubbing the floors in the lobby. Somehow my sense of self-worth was that I had to be busy, busy, busy. If I wasn't doing something physical, there was something wrong with me. And reflecting upon the hard-working people I come from, that made sense. The only problem was, the role I longed for required education, thinking, reading. All the things my family deemed as lazy.

So I furiously cleaned to prove I wasn't lazy.

My roots gave me drive to get on stage, though. I did tackle college and graduated  Magnum Cum Laud with a BA in writing, all while raising three young children, waitressing, freelancing and interning with the State of Montana as a communications specialist. My professors dubbed me, "Super Woman." My career in the Midwest was fast-tracked by my drive, too.

But this is not necessarily a good thing. Because I was still wearing Cinderella's shoes. Busy, busy, busy. So busy I blew out my back three times. So busy I exhausted myself to the point of having anemia and not even knowing it. And when I'm stressed, I still clean as if the step-sisters are after me with a willow switch.

But God has given me the glass slippers. And that is my reflecting lens at which I can apply to writing. He slows me down by sending glorious sunsets to remind me that I am a human being, not a human doing. So I am learning, as Cinderella must have done, to wear the glass slippers elegantly and step boldly onto the stage to do what I was born to do.

Not dishes, not ashes. Not firewood, not mopping. But to open hearts and minds to the beauty God wants to show us all. So I sit down in Cinderella's new shoes and write.


  1. Lovely. You have discovered what you were meant to do and be. Leave the dusting & mopping to Cinderella and write - which you do extremely well.

    1. I wield a mean mop, too but you're right--leave that to Cinderella! Thanks!

  2. What could be more important than that... opening hearts and minds to God's beauty? If the glass slippers fit, wear them. Dance with the gift God gave you.

  3. There truly is nothing more beautiful than the touch of the Master's hand. I am often awed, or shall we say "astonished", by the beauty of this world.

    I spent many years of my life being "busy", keeping the perfect house, trying to be the perfect wife and mother, and while I know it was appreciated by my family, there was just something else dusty the next day. At some point, I realized I was missing "life" by being so busy and I tried to change. I still regress often, but now I force myself to stop and look at the stars in my world and allow them to take center stage more often.

    1. It's a wonderful peace to let the stars take center stage!