The Cinderella Syndrome 

As beautiful as I felt today in my simple outfit and made up face, a cloud of sadness wafted into my day around 2:00 pm when I became certain that I could not participate in the after work festivities of celebrating Founder’s Day for my sorority. Not that I get out or even need to go out that much–I have resigned myself willingly to living and being a certain way in the world as I journey through the different roles and purposes assigned to me. But I would not be the most honest person I could be if I did not admit that sometimes (not often, but every once in a while) I feel the pang of the limitations of my current situation.

And it is like that, you know? Juggling many balls and trying not to add one more so that the ones I have don’t come crashing down. I am locked in a box where routine and obligation rarely let me slip into being someone more comfortable that the one who is constantly cleaning, monitoring, working, cooking, and cycling back. My days are clockwork, my options to step outside into the light of camaraderie. My time is constrained and my world is pretty unyielding. 

So the moments when I do get to walk slightly undefined, I put a great deal of effort into being as pretty as I can be in that moment. I am not always successful. Getting 2 girls together and picking up after a husband who takes the amount of effort I put into running a smooth household cripples me, leaving me minutes on the hour to do much more than put on a good pair of earrings and some lip gloss. Sunday’s are probably my best day. I wake up and with the excuse of “as unto the Lord”, I beautify my body, donning full face and glorious Sumday-go-meeting attire even as the masses become more and more casual. I don’t care though; I wear my heels and 2 piece suits and stockings with glee, jewelry matching just so and makeup painstakingly done (as much as I can do, anyway). For a couple of hours I feel gorgeous and feminine and hope that God forgives me my vanity, even maybe find some delight in the fact that only one day of week usually gets the full treatment of myself. 

Being a wife, mother, and career woman means-for me- abiding by a schedule that leaves little room for the things I loved to do before embarking on this path. Add to that the financial grind of a new start over, and I find myself considering how Cinderella must have felt as she washed another load of clothes or swept another floor. How many tears born of frustration and bored did she wipe away s she watched those around her genuinely enjoy the life she made possible? As much as I find satisfaction in being a working wife and mother, a small piece of me still rises up selfishly in longing for the days when I am not needed as much and can set my own rhythm again. 

In the mean time, I take what I can get–creating balls where none exist and dancing in the glory that resides in the secret spaces of my heart’s desire. Knowing that the clock runs faster than my freedom, I enjoy the little moments as best I can before exchanging my lipstick for laundry and lacy bra for a broom. 



  1. God is honored most by those little things we do with love and the sacrifices we willingly make for others. Keep on keepin’ on.

    I often tell my kids that Cinderella is my favorite princess, not because she is beautiful, but because she continues to work diligently and joyfully in spite of mistreatment. Her attitude and her diligence made her beautiful.

    Liked by 1 person

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