Yeah, I’m a guy and I’m writing about Gilmore Girls. And I’m keeping my man-card – unapologetically.
You may know by now that I have two incredible Princesses. And I’m not at all biased about that. Caring, generous, creative. And at their ages, having family time is important to us. One of our family activities is to watch quality television shows together. One of our favorites is Gilmore Girls. Yes, it’s quality. Don’t hate.
There are two main characters, mother and daughter, both named Lorelai, with the younger going by her nickname, Rory. The various plots involve Rory’s education at a prestigious private school financed by Lorelai’s parents with the “string attached” of a weekly dinner in their home with the four of them together. Note: There are only 16 years between mother and daughter, part of the contention with Lorelai’s parents, particularly her mother.
Rory deals with various social, academic, and extracurricular challenges throughout the series. Frequently, she attempts to conceal said challenges from her extremely supportive mother. This, despite the fact that the two are nearly inseparable, save school and boys. At this point, we’re on boys because, well, we’re only on the 2nd season.
Inevitably, Lorelai is made aware, through other channels or Rory finally admitting her need for assistance from one wiser than she, of the trouble that Rory has encountered and they experience the trouble together. The point is that they are more friends, even at the ages of 16 and 32, than they probably should be.
Rory is, after all, a rather “good” kid, according to Lorelai. Her grades are excellent, her decision-making is quite advanced for a typical adolescent living in America. Stars Hollow (where they live) is an extremely small town, so there really is not a lot of trouble that Rory can experience.
Now… why do we enjoy this show? First, the banter and scripted timing is impeccable. In layman’s terms, it is downright hilarious. Second, the relationship between Rory and Lorelai is an incredibly beautiful thing to behold. For having a child at the age of 16, Lorelai seems to do parenting right. She presents a balance of guidance and friendship rarely seen in television today as well as in real life.
Rory is learning that she really can go to her mother with anything. Anything. My prayer and our practice is to embrace our Princesses when they struggle with anything now because, eventually, that anything is going to be bigger and uglier. Eventually there will be boys and mean girls and harder classes and major disappointments going on in their lives. And, as hard as those are, I want to be there for the Princesses when (not if) they present themselves.
A friend of mine, John, wrote about his daughter in his memoir and he freaking nails it with how he protects and yet doesn’t hide his children. He allows them to live, make mistakes, and learn. And to experience the greatest gift of all. Grace. It isn’t just a religious word that lets us slide into our own muck. It’s a beautiful word that says, “Here, let me walk through this with you.”
Just like Lorelai does with her daughter.
What do you remember about your relationship with your parents or someone else older and wiser that really meant something to you – that you cherish to this day? What do you wish to offer the next generation, perhaps your potential offspring?