A Dance With Cinderella

Last night I took my 11 and 13 year old daughters to “The Princess Ball” father-daughter dance sponsored by a local parks and recreation center near our hometown. To say this was an amazing night with my girls would be an understatement. The parks and rec. pulled out all the stops with an array of activities for the girls to do, plus a horse-drawn carriage ride to cap the night.

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We dressed ourselves to the nines, hit up a local burger joint for dinner before the dance, and spent the rest of the evening having a ton of fun. The girls had a blast, I had a blast, and my good friend John and his daughters, whom we attended with, also had a blast. It was quite an evening.

When we first arrived it was clear, this was more of a “little” princess ball than we realized. Most of the girls who were there were younger than 6 or 7. Our 4 girls were much older than the rest of the crowd but they didn’t care. Neither did we. John and I both agreed- we could only hope this would not be the last year they wanted to go to something like this with us.

Neither one of us want our girls to grow up too fast. Over the past few years, in natural growth toward the teenage years, they have slowly traded Barbies and dress up time for cell phones and sleepovers. All normal, but a bit difficult for us parents.

Last night, however, something happened near the end of the dance that became a powerful reminder for me. My girls and their two friends were in the craft room coloring Fairy God-Mother wands when I heard a familiar song playing across the hall in the dance room. It was a tune I hadn’t heard in several years. I stepped out and moved across the hall, into the back of the room.

This is what I heard…

She spins and she sways to whatever song plays
Without a care in the world
And I’m sitting here wearing the weight of the world on my shoulders
It’s been a long day and there’s still work to do
She’s pulling at me saying “Dad I need you!
There’s a ball at the castle and I’ve been invited
and I need to practice my dancin’
Oh please, Daddy, please!”

So I will dance with Cinderella
While she is here in my arms
‘Cause I know something the prince never knew
Oh I will dance with Cinderella
I don’t want to miss even one song
‘Cause all too soon the clock will strike midnight
And she’ll be gone.

She says he’s a nice guy and I’d be impressed
She wants to know if I approve of the dress
She says, “Dad, the prom is just one week away
And I need to practice my dancin’
Oh please, Daddy, please!”

So I will dance with Cinderella
While she is here in my arms
‘Cause I know something the prince never knew
Oh I will dance with Cinderella
I don’t want to miss even one song
‘Cause all too soon the clock will strike midnight
And she’ll be gone.

[“Cinderella” Word and Music by Steven Curtis Chapman]

I went back into the craft room, a little misty-eyed, and hugged my little girls. They will forever be my little princesses. It’s something I hold dear to my heart. I was reminded, once again last night, to cherish every moment I have with them (and the rest of my children).

Because, all too soon, the clock will strike midnight, and they’ll be gone.

Question: Have you had a similar reminder lately? Share your story with us! You can leave a comment by clicking here.

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  • Ned Campbell

    my oldest princess is now 23, but she is still my “little princess”. thanks for sharing life with us…beautiful.

    • It’s my pleasure. So glad you liked it! They will always be our princesses won’t they?