I love fairytales. I always have. One of my favorite movies is Ever After, with Drew Barrymore. I would watch it when my parents were fighting back when I was a kid. I would go to my nextdoor neighbors house, a lovely couple I considered to be better parental figures than my own, and watch Ever After and other movies on VHS until one of my parents came to get me.
Our neighbors had three sons that were all out of high school by the time I was five or six. They treated me like I was the daughter they never had. They celebrated birthdays and holidays with me; bought me new clothes and toys for when I had to stay overnight on short notice. I truly believed they really loved me. They certainly told me so. And I know I loved them.
The man died when I was nine. The woman remarried and moved away. My parents divorced when I was ten. I'd never felt so alone before.
I look back at my time with my "second parents" and remember it so fondly. Scenes of us playing in the leaves of fall, planting flowers in the spring, sledding in the winter, running through the sprinklers in the summer. Falling asleep in the arms of my second dad on the couch after a long day of playing, but not before eating a delicious meal from my second mom.
They were my fairytale. They taught me to believe in magic, dreams and love. They helped me believe in true love, that it does exist and that there is someone for everyone, and that even wonderful things can come out of the most foul problems.
I miss them so much. Today is the first time I've watched Ever After since my second father died. It's been more than ten years now, and I have missed him every day he's been gone. I realize now that my life with them was a fairytale, the dream I've desired since it ended. Hindsight is 20/20.
Selfishly, I wish I could have a new fairytale. I wish I could find my prince charming, my match, the real love of my life kind of deal; I wish I could introduce that man to my second father. I wish I could get my second parents blessing. I wish I could start a family of my own and bring my children to visit their grandparents who love them so very very much. I wish I could still hug them. I wish I could tell them how I consider them to be my parents and not just my "second" parents. I wish I could tell them that I love them and feel that love be returned again.