By now we’ve probably all seen the movie “Frozen,” whether in theaters or the moment it arrived on your doorstep this week. And I’m sure we’ve all heard the most popular song from the movie, whether it was being sung by Idina Menzel or Adele Dazeem. We’ve been singing this song in carpool lanes, while cooking, even at before-bed dance parties. I’ll be honest… the first three-word phrase that each of my twins started saying was (let’s all shout) “Let It Go!”
But have you ever stopped to really listen to the lyrics? I did and realized that it was the perfect song to make me a better parent. Sure, Elsa showing her true self should be inspiring to my almost five-year-old, but in reality she just likes the pretty dresses and ice castle. And the foot stomping. Oh, the foot stomping. But it was I who Elsa spoke to, and I’ve been really trying hard to listen, even if I start tuning it out after about the tenth time in one day.
“Don’t let them in, don’t let them see
Be the good girl you always have to be
Conceal, don’t feel, don’t let them know
Well, now they know”
“I don’t care
What they’re going to say
Let the storm rage on,
The cold never bothered me anyway”
I don’t want my children to care about what people say about them; I don’t want their self-worth to depend on what others think. But I know they will. And I know it’s my job to instill in them the confidence that they are making the right decisions even when they might be left out in the cold.
“It’s funny how some distance
Makes everything seem small
And the fears that once controlled me
Can’t get to me at all”
I want to teach them that there is a large life out there. That as they get older, the things they are experiencing slowly drift away into distant memories. I want them to know that as they grow, they will become different people and that is OK. That the fears they have as kindergartners, eighth graders, or college seniors don’t have to control them and that they can overcome them and lead amazing lives.
“Let it go, let it go
And I’ll rise like the break of dawn
Let it go, let it go
That perfect girl is gone”
And I learned that I need to let it go — to let go of the idea that my children are perfect. They won’t always be on best behavior, and that is OK. I want them to be children, not miniature adults. I want them to wake up each morning with laughs and smiles that will brighten the dreariest of days. But I also want them to know that if they are in a grumpy mood, that is OK, too. I want to shield them from disappointment, but raise them knowing life isn’t always peaches and cream. I just want them to be themselves.
Are your children addicted to “Frozen” or “Let It Go” like mine are? Did you find Elsa inspiring like I did? I’d love to hear how Elsa or Anna has made an impact on your life (or not). And I’d love to hear how many times you’ve watched the movie.