As we walked hand-in-hand down a busy Proctor street on the first warm Saturday of the year, people sitting at restaurant windows and passing us on the sidewalk couldn’t help themselves from smiling, giggling, smirking. They were in awe of the unicorn princess.
You wore a pink ballet leotard, a tutu, white sneakers, a unicorn crown and held a unicorn wand in the hand not holding mine. To top off the look, you put on a bit of pink lipstick with a professional touch. You looked amazing, really. During our walk in and out of the farmers market people stopped to give compliments. You politely said thank yous but were surprised by the attention. That sense of surprise was the best part. You didn’t see yourself as standing out with your look. You were just being yourself. That’s the right kind of perspective to keep as your style and sense of self evolves.
I’m continuing to see a young lady mature out of your small stature. Your imaginative storytelling has become more detailed and long-winded. You get so caught up in the details of a moment you forget where your story was going or forget the point you were trying to make. You look sideways when you talk, recalling your thoughts. You bat your big eyes and blink rapidly when you’re embarrassed. You have a new game where you spell letters with your fingers and quiz the nearest adult what they are. We don’t listen to kid music in the car anymore. Hip-hop is a little too intense, so we compromise on Maggie Rogers as you prefer to listen to “more girl voices.”
Some toddler behaviors linger. You still like to talk about the “baby in your belly,” which is most entertaining when you tell this to a pregnant woman, almost as if sizing her up. You used to call this baby in your belly Eliza but recently changed it to Ariel to minimize confusion and because The Little Mermaid is on your radar. Aside from being reminded by pregnant women, you often refer to your baby when you’re hungry as you’ve basically personified your stomach.
“My baby will come out soon,” you like to say.
“That’s just fine. Give it 25 years,” I reply.
And as long that’s the case, all is well, Unicorn Princess.