Birthday Tiara


Photo by Ashton Mullins on Unsplash

I guessed the little girl to be about three. Her huge brown eyes were wide, her mouth hanging open. I looked over at her, smiling, but I didn’t say anything. A few feet behind her was her mother. 

I wasn’t sure why this adorable little girl was staring at me, in what seemed like pure awe. 

I glanced over to her mother, hoping for some clue. She said in a near whisper, “She thinks you’re a real princess.”

My hand shot up to the tiara I somehow forgot I was wearing. The birthday tiara that my mom has made me wear all day as a joke. She thought it would be hysterical, a whimsical way to celebrate my thirtieth birthday. All day, one of two things has been happening: either people look at me like a mental patient out on a day pass, or they laugh good-naturedly and wish me happy birthday. Either way, it’s been embarrassing.

But this was too cute. I knelt down in front of the little girl, put on what felt like my most princess-y smile, and stuck my hand out. “Hello, there. I’m Princess Caroline.” She beamed back at me. “What’s your name?”

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