What We Can Learn from Cinderella

Today I woke up to a very uninspiring morning. I felt myself dragging and stagnated. In order to give myself a moment to gather my thoughts and prepare for the day, I put my two-year-old to watch Cinderella (the Soviet version, which I highly recommend!) and went about my business.

The melancholic melody paired with my lack of energy brought me back to the couch to cuddle with her and watch the timeless story together. When the fairy appeared to the exhausted lonely Cinderella who had lost all hopes of going to the ball, I started weeping uncontrollably.

Her story resonates so deep within us, women. We go through life trying to please everyone, do everything to make those around us happy, and at the end the day, we are left behind the scenes, in our dirty rags, with our dreams forgotten.

And yet, my tears were not about abandonment or unfulfilled dreams. On the contrary, they were tears of joy and inspiration. Watching the story, I was reminded of the magic that I so often encountered on my journey: of finding inspiration and hope when all doors were closed, of having someone believe in me when I myself had stopped to believe, in receiving the gift of love when my heart was shut down.

You see, the impossible and the magical are all around us. It’s about believing. It’s about looking up. And it’s about standing up for what we believe in and giving it all we have. When Cinderella put her head down in exhaustion, she fell asleep; and it was in her dream that the magic took place. But the real magic happened when her dream turned reality. The impossible that she so eagerly held on to, eventually materialized. She didn’t dispense the fairy as a hallucination. She believed her and transformed her life with this belief.

Our lives are so full of rationality and negativity; we pride ourselves for being reasonable and realistic. But what about chasing our dreams, what about letting go of fears and limiting convictions and taking a leap of faith and into our dreams?! What about being a little reckless, adventurous and selfish for once to pursue the real vision of self and life. No, I don’t believe in fairy tales, but I do believe in a brighter future for myself, my daughter, and for all of us who have a vision and dreams. Changing this world begins with each of us individually, and real change begins by truly believing in ourselves: the self that we CAN become.

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