Fun fact: I named my daughter Gabbie after one of my favourite princesses, Jasmine.
I love her because despite being born as a princess she’s independent, spirited, curious, and caring among other things. It’s some of the things I hopefully want to impart to my daughter. Letting her be the person she was meant to be by growing up to be confident but compassionate, curious yet caring.
I think most girls can relate to a princess or two. I mean I grew up wanting to be one because their stories are inspiring and their characteristics are very aspirational. While most princesses need a prince to rescue them, I admire the few ones who are not stereotypical of a damsel in distress. And I love how Disney has been more open to strong, independent characters to add to their roster of princesses–one was launched on the big screen almost two years ago. She’s doesn’t want to be called a princess but rather a daughter to a chief. Can you guess who she is?
Yes, she’s Moana!
“Okay, first, I am not a princess.“
This famous line is one of the reasons why Moana is a lovable character. She’s fearless and has the courage to sail out to the unknown.
My very own princess loves Moana. I still vividly remember when we watched the movie back in 2016, she was so excited to see a Disney movie where a princess lives on an island. So when I surprised her with Moana and Pua plush toys, she was thrilled and even recalled some scenes from the movie.
I asked her what are the things that she likes about Moana and how she can relate with her and here are the answers she gave me.
She loves the water
Though the ocean hasn’t called me like Moana, I love it as much as she does. I actually wish I can live on an island like her!
When she learned her village is in trouble, she went out of her way to help. So she sailed away to look for Maui so he can return Te Fiti’s heart.
She has a strong connection with her grandmother
Moana’s grandmother is very supportive to her–di ba there are scenes where her grandmother will show up and talk to her whenever she doesn’t know what to do? I think it like how Ahma (Gabbie’s grandmother) is to me.
More than saving the day, I love how Moana’s story is centred on family and how building relationships with your loved one is important. I think this is something that every parent wants to instill to their children. I was surprised how Gabbie saw her relationship with her Ahma in Moana and her grandma.
She’s not afraid
Moana taught me not be afraid to try, to fail and to explore. I wish I can be like her when I’m older–to follow my heart even though I’m not sure where it’ll take me.
To be determined and to have resilience is what I wish for for my kids to have. Having the right skill is one thing but having the determination and resilience to not be afraid to fail and to try again is something only they can develop on their own. Whenever I see my kids giving up so easily, I always refer to stories such as Moana’s on how she persisted despite the challenges she faced while she and Maui were sailing.
My key takeaway from the movie is to learn how to fully support my kids on their dreams. It’s pretty easy to say this but to wholeheartedly do this is what’s challenging. As parents we all want what’s best for our kids and sometimes we get clouded with the idea that we know exactly what this is just because we raised them. But here’s where parenting gets tricky: we can only guide them to where the path starts but they have to be the one to walk that path. And Moana has made me realize this. How she bravely ventured on her own to discover who she really is all while remembering the lessons her father has taught her over the years.
I still have years to guide my own princess to discover her abilities and slowly lead her to path she’ll eventually take. But for now I’ll take all the chances I can get to hangout with her as much as I can. I’m planning on doing an all girls trip (just her and me) so we can get to know each other more. Maybe go back to Hong Kong? The last time we were there was when she celebrated her 7th birthday in no less than Hong Kong Disneyland (you can read about our trip HERE). I learned that Hong Kong Disneyland Resort recently launched some of their newest attractions such as the Carnivale of Stars, The Incredibles Arrive in Tomorrowland and Moana: A Homecoming Celebration at Adventureland. Moana’s Homecoming is a 20-minute live show with music,dance, puppetry and immersive storytelling. I think Gabbie will love this because she’ll have a chance to meet Moana and participate as she recounts her tale during her oceanic voyage.
Did you know that Hong Kong Disneyland has a few exclusive offers for Pinoy guests? Yes! There’s a “Play, Shop, Dine” 1-Day Special Package where you get a complimentary HK$50 merchandise gift voucher or one free Mickey waffle upon buying a 1-day ticket. There’s also a Hong Kong Disneyland Double Fun Package where you get a HKDL 2-day Ticket and a Cathay Pacific Airways round trip air ticket to Hong Kong (promo period is until September 30, 2018). Good deals right? Okay now I really wanna go back to Disneyland! You can ask your travel agency about these deals or visit www.hongkongdisneyland.com/offers-discounts/ to know more.