When my sister Maria was in preschool she watched Disney’s The Little Mermaid every day.
Not necessarily the entire movie every day, but some piece of it. This was back in the days of VHS. So, as long as the tape didn’t need to be rewound, Maria was happy to watch it from absolutely any point.
This persistent film watching resulted in our entire household becoming fluent in Mermaid. At the time there were five of us living at 13 Birch Drive, and all of us could recite every line and sing every song.
Of course, none of us could really hit any of the notes, but more on that some other time.
Tonight, when I picked up Briggs from daycare he asked if we could go to the library. While we were there he asked if we could get a few movies. He let me pick them out.
“How about three you’ve never seen before?” I asked.
“Okay,” he agreed.
We ended up with Jungle Book, Santa Clause 3, and Little Mermaid.
He picked Little Mermaid to watch tonight.
I was a little shocked (but mostly heartened) to discover that even after more than twenty years since Miss Maria was Mr. Briggs’s age, I hadn’t lost any of the Mermaid language.
Though, I did hear some it differently now.
When Ariel started in with her classic delivery of Part of Your World, I couldn’t help but think of a recent visit with a kind, strong, talented woman I’m humbled to call a friend.
She wants, what so many of us want. Peace. To be a part of a world that so obviously and lovingly wants to be a part of her. Of you. Of me.
I’m just guessing here, but I’m pretty sure at one point or another we’ve all pined (wished, hoped, prayed) to feel truly wanted. To be completely and effortlessly a part of something big and bold.
Today, my gift was reminding those I care for (including myself) that we already are.
(PS – For the record, I believe my sister Maria may be the one person who doesn’t need reminding. For even when she’s staring down her fiercest demons (her Ursulas if you will) she manages to retain a grace and grit that is absolutely divine. She’s a deep well of inspiration and way prettier than Ariel.)