The four year old girl danced before me in my living room, wearing a fluffy pair of red and black feathered wings. She flung herself about with all the grace her little body could muster; a thud here, a bang there, bending down to throw her feet into the air acrobatically. Being the mother of five girls, this was certainly not the first little girl to dance on her tippy toes for my entertainment. But she was the first to do so in quite a while.
Her name was Snow, which I found to be a delightful and unusual name. However, the tiny dancer wasn't willing to accept being named after just another seasonal weather pattern.
"I call myself Princess Rockstar," she told me. With this, she stood a little straighter and lifted her chin royally. "You can call me Princess Rockstar, too."
"Just Princess Rockstar?" I asked.
"Well, sometimes Princess Rockstar Barbie Moviestar. But usually just Princess Rockstar."
"Hmm," I said. "When I was a girl, I would have called myself Princess Cowgirl."
Princess Rockstar considered this in silence for quite some time. I watched her eyes narrow, and a frown develop on her tiny brow. She was thinking about cowgirls vs. rockstar/barbie/moviestars.
"Well," she said slowly and thoughtfully (and perhaps somewhat condescendingly). "You can be called Princess Cowgirl, if you'd like, but...you can call me Princess Rockstar."
Then I understood. A cowgirl is a female cow. There are a few of those clumsy, large animals just down the street from the princess' house. So this was a difficult thing for a modern little girl to digest; a strange concept for one who had never seen a cowboy movie, and one who would be a princess/rockstar/moviestar/Barbie. Nevertheless, she would tolerate it. She would even support my being called Princess Cowgirl for the sake of our friendship. But she would not adopt such an undainty title for herself.
As for me, I still call her Princess Rockstar. But sometimes just "Snow".