More in this series
On Fairy Tales and the Ghostliness of Early Motherhood
What saves these lost mothers is different in every fairy tale; often they’re brought back simply by virtue of being recognized. For me, coming back to life took time.
This is Tales for Willful Readers a column by Cate Fricke on the lasting power of folk and fairy tales, how they have influenced us individually and collectively, and the lessons they offer for modern life.
How is my baby? How is my fawn?
Twice more I’ll come, and then I’ll be gone.
“I’ve never felt so useless,” I told my husband, meaning both physically and mentally. Project RunwayHell’s Kitchen
How is my child? How is my fawn?
There’s no more time. Soon I’ll be gone.
she was smiling, growing strong, and exploring her little world.
But recognition has played its small part, too. Just a month or so ago, I was nursing Edie and she looked up at my face—she reached up to my lip, then lowered her hand to her own lips and smiled. I’d been doing well before that, getting into routines and enjoying watching her daily discoveries. But in that moment, I felt as though my flesh had finally colored back in all the way. Not only had my daughter seen me, she’d seen herself in my face.
Yes, honeyI’m right here, and so are you. We are both right here.
Enter your email address to receive notifications for author Cate Fricke
You have been added to the notification list for author Cate Fricke
More by this author
Seizing the Means of Enchantment: What Fairy Tales Can Teach Us About Class and Wealth in the Age of the Mega-Corporation
Class systems are not fixed in fairy tales—in fact, fairy tales would almost seem to argue for the redistribution of wealth.
The long and fluid history of fairy tales shows us that men who want to control, dehumanize, and violate women have always existed.
What, exactly, are the building blocks that make a fairy tale a fairy tale? And who—or what—might be making them in the future?
More in this series
We’ve all had to reckon with the burden of untold stories. Every woman has one, and every woman carries around with her the stories of others.
Those who spend their lives in bodies others deem unworthy grow accustomed to building our own self-worth.