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My Prince Will Come MAG
Standing on my tiptoes, my new patent leather shoes shimmering in the evening light, I watched eagerly as each of the freshly washed and polished cars pulled up. Daddies and daughters filed out, like little Cinderellas emerging from their daddies’ special pumpkin coaches, and blissfully walked hand in hand to the door of the school. Fathers, clean-cut and dressed to impress, and daughters in new dresses and shiny shoes marched proudly up the steps to the Girl Scouts’ annual Daddy/Daughter Dance.
“I’ll be there,” he had pledged. “I promise.”
I waited impatiently for my Prince Charming. Mommy had helped me get into my new purple dress, which I had chosen because of the lacy ruffles along the bottom. She had pulled up my long, blond hair and made cascading waves of princess curls that flowed softly over my tiny shoulders. In my heart I knew any minute the special car that would turn me into a Cinderella would drive up.
His words raced through my mind and caused a traffic jam of thoughts.
“I love you, Sugar. I’ll be there soon.”
These were words I had heard countless times. After every not-so-promising phone call, the same words punctuated the pointless, false promises with hope.
I waited, and waited ... and waited.
Once the sun went down, no one could see me standing at that window, tear-stained cheeks sticky with those no-longer-perfect curls. I watched as the shadow princesses danced by the brightly lit windows with their daddies who loved them so dearly.
“Mommy,” I asked, my hurt and innocence blending into a whisper-soft plea, “why doesn’t Daddy call or come see me?”
She never answered my childlike questions because she too was trapped by confusion and hurt. What he did affected her as much as it did me. The man she had once cared so much about didn’t seem to love her or the children he fathered. Mom was standing right beside me staring out the picture window waiting for that car. I guess she still believed in fairy tales too.
Why doesn’t Daddy love me? Why doesn’t Daddy care?
The years have done little to answer the questions that haunted those princess-in-waiting years. I have, however, learned to look through pain-marred eyes and somehow get a clear vision of the man who never came.
For some reason, I feel sorrier for him than for my mom and me. For some reason, he is the victim in the tragedy that was our lives. After everything he put my family through, I can’t help but pity him.
Although time has passed, the emptiness and pain has not. In my heart, I still feel like that little girl, tears filling my baby blues, standing expectantly at the window, waiting for my pumpkin coach carrying my Prince Charming who will sweep me off my feet and make me the happiest little girl in the world.
I can’t say what I miss because I can’t miss something I never had. I may have missed the dance, trips to the park, eating ice cream with my daddy, or hearing bedtime stories. Those moments can never return, but what he failed to see is what he missed out on. Unfortunately for him, he missed witnessing his little girl mature into an amazing young woman, and he can never rewind the hands of time. Those moments are lost forever.
For years I watched the cars pull up carrying a lucky little girl and her daddy holding her delicate hand as they walked to the door. For years I waited for that car to pull into my driveway and for my daddy to hold my hand, wavy curls bouncing with every graceful step, as we floated toward the dance. For years I waited ... for the car that never came.