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To A Sleeping Beauty

| Sande Caplin |

To those of you who have daughters and grandaughters….this narrative is a very special to me.  I read it to my daughter at her wedding.  Get out the tissues.  Even if you don’t have any daughters, this is a must read.  Jimmy Dean did the original lyrics back in 1962.

Dear Daughter,
I tiptoed in your room tonight and I looked down at you smilin’ in your sleep. You were so lovely my heart nearly broke; and I thought how much like Sleeping Beauty a little girl is. When I tuck you in at night I never know how old you’ll be when you wake. One evening you crawl on your dad’s lap and throw your arms around his neck, the next morning you might be much too grown up for that sort of thing.

You’re so quickly approaching the awkward stage, too young to drive the car and yet too old to be carried in the house half asleep on daddy’s shoulder. I have a secret that I’ve never told you, Sleeping Beauty, you’re going on a very exciting trip. You’ll travel from yesterday all the way to tomorrow. It’s a rapid journey and you’ll travel light,
leaving behind you – measles, mumps, freckles, bumps, bubble gum and me.

I promise not to feel too hurt when you discover that the world is more important than your daddy’s lap. Yesterday you were blue jeans and pig tails, the neighborhood’s best tree climber. Tomorrow you’ll be blue organdy and pony tails and you’ll view the world from a loftier perch – a pair of high heel shoes.

Yesterday you could mend a doll’s broken leg with a hug; tomorrow you’ll be able to break a young man’s heart with a kiss. Humh! Yesterday you could get lost one aisle away from me at a supermarket – now I have to worry about losing you down another aisle to some strange young man. You see, just at the point where you’re growing pains stop, mine begins. Yesterday you were kind of a pain in the neck when you were around, tomorrow you’ll be an ache in my heart when your not.

Tomorrow you’ll lay aside your jump rope and tie up the telephone lines and that little boy that used to push you in the mud; well, he’ll fight to sit out a dance with you. The clock is countin’ the minutes for you and the sky upstairs is savin’ its’brighest stars; – and the sun is waitin’ with its’ shiniest day.

Oh I, I can’t expect you to live in a doll house forever. Sooner or later, the butterfly sheds it’s cocoon and the smallest bird must try its wings. But when you grow up and out of my arms; when you finally get too big for my shirts, I’ll still recall how you used to scatter dust and dolls and partially through every room in the house; but you spread sunshine too. The dust is settled, your mom picked up the dolls; – but the sunshine will always fill the corners of our hearts.

So, here I am talking in your sleep, because, well if you saw this look on my face, you’d laugh and if I spoke with this lump in my throat, I’d cry. Yeah! Honey when I looked at you tonight you were a Sleeping Beauty. So, I tiptoed over and I kissed you – you didn’t wake up, I knew you wouldn’t.  According to the legend only the handsome young prince can open your eyes and I’m just the father of the future bride.

So you sleep on pretty thing, tomorrow you’ll wake and you’ll be a young lady and you won’t even realize that you’ve changed courses in the middle of a dream. But you might notice a little change in me; I’ll look a little different somehow. A little sadder, a little wiser, but a whole lot richer. Tonight, I kissed a princess and I feel like a king.

original lyrics by Jimmy Dean:

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