July 23, 2013

Why I'm Excited About the New Heir

I realize that our news feed has been flooded with images and announcements and posts all about Wills and Kate and their new arrival...and many of my friends are sitting back saying "whoop-dee-doo! who cares?!?!?"

It started me thinking...why are people so ecstatic about a baby being born in England that will be named King, barring the end of the world, an uprising of the people of Britain, or Jesus' return???

I, for one, know in myself, this is the reason: (it's long, please bear with me)

Once, about 30 or so years ago, the news was filled with the story of a young lady named Diana, who was announced as being engaged to marry Charles, Prince of England (and a whole host of other titles)...and I remember listening to the stories about how this fairly "normal" English girl was to have the Fairy Tale life - marry the prince and become a Princess!!!!!  My little girl's heart was filled to bursting...if it could happen to her, maybe someday, I'd have a Cinderella ending and marry a prince...

I remember seeing magazines, newspapers, news stories filled with images of preparations - streets washed, flowers planted, trees pruned just so, ancient carriages, talk of what jewels she'd wear, what her gown would look like, where would they live, and how they'd surely live "happily ever after"...

And then I remember the treat of all treats - my parents allowed me to stay up and WATCH THE TELEVISION COVERAGE!!!!!  (for any readers too young to remember, we only had 3 networks stations, one local station, and 2 PBS local stations - no 24-7 stations, no cable, no internet)  I still remember seeing the aerial shot of the carriage as it traveled the route to the Church...and remember that while it didn't look like a pumpkin turned into a carriage, it was still an actual carriage with horses...I remember the carpet runner laid down, the guards in their fantastic dress uniforms, the flowers strewn on the carpet, the shiny sabers of the military, the moment that door opened and she stepped out in that glorious shining white satin dress - puffed sleeves, belled skirt, a tiara perched perfectly atop her golden hair, her blue eyes shining, a peaceful and serene look upon a face that to me was the embodiment of princessly perfection...the toe of her white shoe peeping out from under the skirts...the stately walk up the carpet...

I remember later seeing the images of Charles, dashingly handsome and looking almost exactly like Walt Disney's Prince from their version of Cinderella...in his military dress, medals gleaming...

I also remember, years later, learning about Charles Great-Uncle, that abdicated the throne for love an American divorcee, and thinking how much he must have loved that woman to give up being a King...

I remember too, the hullabaloo that photos of Fergie (the royal one, not the Black-Eyed Pea) caused...the scandal of her divorce from Andrew, and the Queen's acceptance of her still as a daughter.

I remember the heartbreak when the story of Charles and Diana divorcing came up...how their Happily Ever After was just an image in our minds, an assumption that because they were Royals, somehow they were above the ability to grow discontented (if they ever were truly in love with one another), and to seek solace outside of each other...how their divorce would shatter the lives of 2 young boys...and how, the even greater tragedy of Diana's death would rock their world...

How William and Harry would have gone through the craziness of becoming a broken home, bringing in their father's girlfriend, and their mother's boyfriend and then losing her in a needless accident...

I remember hearing how William was off to University, studying, how his every move was watched, how every girl he spoke with was suspected of being the new Princess...and how he and Kate would be mentioned...

I know for a fact that mention of their engagement made my heart sing - how he was so grounded to have dated her for such a long time to be sure she was the one so he wouldn't repeat mistakes of anyone in his family of marrying just because someone thought she was suitable, or he ought to make a match of it.

And watching, the day of their wedding (yes, I watched as much as I possibly could), to see another fairy tale begin as a young prince watched his bride walk down the aisle of the Church, all the pomp, the history, the centuries of tradition and the solemn joy of the day...how even though their wedding was about who he was and all it entailed, you could tell watching them, that it was the marriage of two individual people very much in love with one another...

And finally, hearing the announcement about a baby on the way made it that much more special - here they were, so strong together, so "made one"...

And yes, when the news announced she'd checked in to the hospital, my heart jumped just a little bit...in part because I know what it's like to not be sure if you can have a baby, then finally be pregnant and to wonder if things were normal, and all right, and how it would change things...and to hear that he'd been by her side, but that it wasn't a circus of family simply because she was the Prince's wife, but that they could just be Will and Kate at the hospital having their first child...

And then hearing yesterday that they'd had a good childbirth, that their precious little boy arrived healthy and safe and that Kate didn't suffer any craziness, as I know is far too common in childbirth even today...

I'm excited because this little boy is another chapter in a glorious (and often quite crazy and bloody) history of a nation that gave birth to America.

I'm not a subject of their kingdom, but I'd rather be excited about the new little Royal than hear another story about all the ills of America.

This little baby signifies hope and another generation of a good family (not a perfect one!) on the throne in a world where everything else seems dark and dirty and spoiled.  He is a light in England.

I also sit and think about the King of Kings...how He was born in a stable, with no doctor, no family, no pomp, no media...and how His first 2 years were spent on the run from a crazy King that was seeking to kill Him...how He grew up in a small village with no claim to greatness, and yet how He was The Light for all the world...

I'm excited about the new prince of England because it brings to the forefront of my mind my need for The Prince of Peace.  And while this new baby will have a lengthy, history-laden name, running through my mind right now is a litany of other Names...

Prince of Peace, Wonderful, Counselor, Almighty God, Rose of Sharon, Savior, Shepherd, Teacher, Father, Alpha, Omega, I Am, Yahweh, Jehovah Jirah...

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