Thinking about my dental crown had me joking about the figurative crown I like to think I wear on my head. And I realized it wasn’t really a joke. We should ALL wear crowns on our heads. Because, as women, we should ALL remember we are queens, even when we are elbow-deep in dirty dishwater or knee-deep in other people’s crap.
By saying we are queens, I’m not trying to say we are above the more hum-drum of domestic tasks. Or that everyone should kneel at our feet and kiss our rings (though that might be nice, and while my hubby is down there kissing on my ring…). What I mean is that we should keep in mind the natural royalty we each have within us. While it’s certainly easier said than done, we should always hold our heads high, though never look down our noses. We should always be gracious, but never be doormats. We should always build up and never put down. And we should always remember our own self-worth, even when we put the needs of others before our own.
With this in mind, I’d like to offer up some tips on how to be a better queen, if for no other reason than to remind us to polish and straighten our inherent crowns, and wear those invisible family jewels with pride.
The Queenly Wave. A proper parade wave is an essential skill for a queen. Hold your arm at an angle toward the floor and bend your elbow until your hand is roughly level with your shoulder. There are three basic waves: 1) Washing the windows. With fingers and thumb held daintily together, rock hand side to side on your wrist like a metronome (see Queen Elizabeth here). 2) Turning the Lightbulb. Now, cup your hand around an invisible lightbulb (thumb close to your fingers… don’t let that digit stray!) and, keeping your hand in line with your forearm, swivel from your elbow in a loose melon-scooper motion. 3) The Parade Wave. Much like the rhythm of the Tango, the parade wave begins with two relatively slow rocks of the arm at the elbow, then two or three quicker rocks from the wrist. Elbow. Elbow. Wristwristwrist. Repeat.
Table Manners. A queen should always leave the cell phone in the purse, chew with her mouth closed, pass the salt and pepper together, and enjoy the food we eat. Mealtime is not just to fuel our bodies, it is also to fuel our family and our spirits. We can’t do that if we hate what we put in our mouths, or shovel it in so quickly we can’t even taste it. Speaking of putting things in our mouths, queens always take small bites of food, so we are prepared to answer a question, address a child’s behavior, or (if you’re me) put your foot in there.
Public Speaking. Even when it only involves the Starbucks drive-through barista, we queens oftenhave to address the public. Some people recommend pretending everyone in the room is naked. I disagree, unless you are speaking at a Male Cover Model convention. Instead, pretend they are close friends who you don’t have to impress because they already love you. And, when your smile is trembling so hard you feel an earthquake approach, or when your eyelashes are quivering so much you’re afraid of typhoon winds, remember that no one else has any idea any of this is happening. No, really, what you think is an octave-wide warble in your voice is not even noticeable by others. Let their ignorance give you nerves of steel.
What does any of this have to do with being a writer or writing? The same thing it has to do with any aspect of our lives: there is a lot that can beat us down and distract us if we let it. We can easily lose sight of the fact that we wear a crown. Success is 1% inspiration, 99% perspiration, and 100% attitude. Our crown is our attitude. Always remember that, even though it might be a bit tarnished and askew, your tiara is always there and will never fall off, no matter how hard life hits. And practice your parade wave.