Princess Dreams – Once upon a time, a little girl dreamt of living a grand, glorious life. Of course, she wanted her handsome prince, but she also wanted a big castle, lots of beautiful horses, and gorgeous hills and forests around her castle to explore and enjoy on her horses.
And then she married her prince, and she had those things for a little while. And, oh, how she loved all those joys she had dreamt about so long ago.
Until one day, the entire dream crumbled. She realized she was no longer married to a charming prince. Instead, she married the mean ogre who disguised himself as the handsome prince. He was difficult to live with, constantly berating and tearing her down. He was often out late at the pub drinking and gambling with his friends. She was left alone in the big, dark, damp castle.
Slowly, his gambling took over their lives. They had to sell the horses and the castle, and she was reduced to living in a simple cottage in the woods. She had to hunt and gather her own food and clean the cottage herself. She didn’t mind that so much. It was the prince that made life unbearable. He got meaner and meaner and cared less and less about the princess and their life together. He gambled away everything she earned, and finally it became unbearable.
So, the princess left the mean ogre, taking the last remaining horse. She set off on her own through the woods to find a new dream.
At first it was very hard. She had to sleep out in the forest by herself, feeling afraid of what might happen to her. She had no money and was forced to survive off the blessings of the forest. But she survived. She even came to enjoy the simple life. Noticing the beauty around her, she relaxed into the silence. The ogre no longer yelled at her. She started to hum along to the songs of the birds. Soon, she was dancing in the twilight, enjoying her freedom and the beauty of the world around her.
Then, she began to dream again.
At first, it was simple dreams. She dreamt of owning a small cottage by the stream. Maybe one day she would buy a carriage so she could drive into the next village and visit her sister. Perhaps in the very distant future, she would take that carriage and travel around the land visiting old friends and new places.
As time went by, she learned to sew and took in mending for her neighbors. Soon she was making beautiful gowns for all the fair maidens of the land. With the money she earned, she bought herself that cottage by the stream.
On the land around the cottage, she planted a garden and was soon selling her vegetables at the market. And not long after, she had earned enough to buy herself that carriage. She started visiting her sister in the next village. They would take drives together out into the country in her carriage pulled by her lovely new horses.
The princess’ dreams continued, and she kept blossoming. She no longer worried about her every move, no longer felt constrained by the fear the mean ogre had ruled over her with. She was free and happy. As she radiated this inner strength and happiness, all around her grew to love her. She carried on throughout her life, dreaming of her next adventure or achievement. And with patience and dedication, surrounded by people who loved her, she continued to live out her dreams over and over again.
Sherry Lutz Herrington is the owner of Sherrington Financial Fitness, a business consulting and accounting firm specializing in strategic business planning and solid financial accounting for businesses. She is also the author of Strong Women Thriving (https://strongwomenthriving.com/), a blog which focuses on empowering women to be financially savvy, particularly after experiencing financial abuse. Sherry is currently writing a new book that both shares her personal story and addresses financial abuse. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Join our FB group https://www.facebook.com/groups/womensurivingfinancialabuse