With an eye toward Halloween, my wife found a lovely second-hand dance dress for our 3-year old daughter last month. It has clear straps and a shiny bodice with an abundance of tulle fabric flowing from her waist to her knees. She often pairs a silver plastic tiara with it, calling it her “Cinderella dress” as she dances through the kitchen. Last week, at the behest (and I imagine for the amusement) of her mother, she implored me to join her.
This dear heart doesn’t yet realize what an impossible task it is to teach me to dance, so she is beguiling in her innocence as she dutifully shows me how to sway and step and jump up in the air. The experience is so intoxicating that it almost makes me forget myself and my eternal embarrassment at moving my body so. But then I inevitably come back to my ashamed self as we turn in a tight circle between the table and the stove while music plays on the computer.
During this particular session, she excitedly assigned my part to play in our little drama. “You will be the king,” she said, and then amended herself. “No, you will be the prince!” This part I knew a little better than what had gone before. I quickly knelt very low, looked up at her, took her hand, and said, “Hello. It is a pleasure to meet you, Cinder-Ella!” Her cheeks immediately turned red as she tilted her head to one side, paused, and smothered me with a hug.
I will never, ever let anyone date this girl. Ever.