ON THE IMPORTANCE OF PRINCESS LEIA…
… And why every girl is a space princess.
Growing up female is not an easy thing. Before you throw me a temper tantrum about how growing up being a guy isn’t either, let me just quickly state that: I wouldn’t know and I’m not saying that being a boy is a walk in the park – I’m sure it comes with its own struggles.
Now don’t get me wrong, I like being a girl. It’s how I feel on the inside, it’s how I am on the outside so in that retrospect I was blessed. I’m privileged and was also blessed enough when it came to my parents – my mom never made me wear colours I didn’t like and generally, my upbringing has been a lovely one. No complaints there. I got to play with dolls, and because I have a younger brother I also got to play with cars, and because in kindergarten it doesn’t really matter who hangs out with who, I also got to play with boys who really liked a certain legendary space odyssey which later on in more ways than one greatly impacted my life. I still remember when one time during play time, two of my mates were playing with their action figures and when I asked where those were from, they told me it wasn’t for girls.
Naturally, I watched every Episode.
It was later in life that I realized, how during my growing up, there had been a huge gap to fill in terms of a positive female influence. I mean, granted, I had my mom, but I’m speaking about fictional heroines. And I’m forever grateful to those two boys for introducing me to one that is so important in the lives of so many, boys and girls alike.
She’s taught me so many things. I think now, at twenty-one I realize that more than ever. I, like many of my peers, have been dealing with some sort of existential crisis lately – in terms of what I’m going to do with my life once I wrap up college and asking myself if my dreams and goals are even achievable. A downwards spiral of ‘I can’t do this’ and other nasty negative thoughts, all while watching as others succeed – some even younger than I am. At twenty-one I also still can’t seem to be able to shake some of the more negative comments made about me whilst growing up and I’m thoroughly thinking about how if I ever have a daughter, I’ll bestow onto her that every girl is a space princess, no matter what shape and size, and should always be treated as such. Girls shouldn’t tear each other down; they should encourage each other to be better, support one another, and help each other out in fighting for their goals and dreams. Preferably while wearing their hair wrapped up in the shape of cinnamon rolls over their ears.
After all… it takes great courage, seemingly endless amounts of fighting and a great amount of patience mixed with a whole lot of stubbornness – and a little help from your friends – to bring down empires and raise galaxies.