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In Her Mother's Closet

Natalie put on her princess dress. It was pink with sparkles all over. It had a large poofy skirt that was itchy but she didn’t care. She slipped on her mom’s matching high heels; they had a big diamond across where her toes went. Then Natalie placed her own pearl necklace upon her neck. Her mother had one just like it. She wanted to be exactly like her mother. She reached for her tiara but, it wasn’t there. Her mother appeared behind her, with her daughter’s tiara in hand and placed it on Natalie’s head, “There you go, my little princess.”



Natalie smiled at her mother. Her mother left the room and she stared at herself in the mirror. She twirled in circles. The poofy skirt on her dress lifted slightly in the air. She felt as if she was floating in air, “I’m a princess.”



Natalie went to find her mother. She found her mother sitting in front of her vanity. She was putting on her make-up. She loved watching her mother put on her powder. Her mother’s paint would change each night. Natalie’s mother was a ballerina on a mast. Natalie’s mother left to go dance and her babysitter was in her usual place; on the couch, in front of the television, sleeping. Natalie snuck out of her bed and ran to her mother’s room. She wanted to the mother’s closet and opened it.

All the different ensembles were very little; they nearly seemed to be Natalie’s size. Natalie found one that looked like a bathing suit. It was pink with sparkles all over, it reminded her of her favorite princess dress she wore earlier. She closed the mother’s door and locked it; she didn’t want the babysitter to find her. She stared at herself in her mother’s costume her in the mother’s mirror. She did not twirl this time. The costume had no skirt so she was unable to float in the air. Natalie wanted her face to match the mother’s. She went to her mother’s vanity, and found a pretty pink lipstick that matched what she was wearing. She put it on and went back to the big mirror near her mother’s closet. Natalie thought, “How can I be like mommy now?”

Natalie decided to dance just like her mother. Each morning Natalie would watch her mother practice through a little opening in her door. Her mother would move gracefully around the shiny silver mast. Natalie closed her eyes and pretended there was a mast in the mother’s room in front of the mirror. She tried to dance as gracefully as her mother did. When she opened her eyes, she looked at the clock and saw that it was late and time to go to sleep. Natalie closed the closet door, unlocked the door to her mother’s room, turned off the lights, and scurried to back to her princess bed.

Natalie’s mother came in to wake her up the next morning. She drew back the shades and sat next to her daughter on the princess bed and began to rub her shoulder. She whispered in the softest voice as if she was a mouse speaking, “Natalie, my sweet little princess, it’s the morning and mommy’s home, it’s time to wake up.”

Natalie rolled onto her back and rubbed her eyes to remove the sandman’s sand from them. She sat up in her bed and her blanket fell to her waist revealing her mother’s costume that she was still wearing from the night before. Her mother stared at her, “Natalie, what is God’s name are you wearing?”

Natalie gazed up at her mother, her eyes sparkling and she smiled, “It’s your dance costume Mommy, I played dress up.”

The mother looked down at her daughter, and saw herself. She saw the person she did not want Natalie to be, but the person she feared she might become. Natalie saw tears in her mother’s eyes and hugged her tightly. She whispered softly in her mother’s ear, “Please don’t worry Mommy; I want to be like you.”




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