Mental Illness Is Not Always Bad

You sat there, ruling over your kingdom with your purple pony by your side. Princess of the food court. You were so blissfully unaware of the eyes that leered so blatantly in your direction. The plastic crown, placed so carefully on top of your curly, silver hair, sparkled in the fluorescent lighting, and you held yourself with such poise.

Your outfit was put together with such care and precision. Every article you wore was perfectly color-coordinated in the softest shade of lilac. It suited you quite nicely. It brought the blue out in your eyes. You were reading the Chinese Horoscopes on the back of a take-out menu, ignoring the snide comments buzzing around you.

When I first noticed you, I was completely taken aback. At first, I was shocked and felt that your costume was inappropriate for your surroundings, but then I took a second look.

 Admittedly, I was among the staring eyes, but I was looking at you for a completely different reason. I did not see you as a freak of nature or childish in any way. Though strange to observe at first, I realized that you are everything I had longed to be as a child, and it was so wonderful to see the dream realized before my eyes.

Though your body was aged, I saw in your eyes the child I used to be and the dreamer I wish my son to become. Your mind, so innocent, allowed you to truly be the very thing that every little girl longs to be: A beautiful princess.

You may have been sitting at the table by yourself, but you were not alone. The kid in me was right there beside you, holding your hand and making that purple plastic pony gallop across the crumb-strewn table.