Admittedly not very high on the news radar and not life-changing to anyone but them, I found myself thinking about Prince Harry and Meghan Markle “stepping back” from the royal family. (I’m sure Harry has a last name, but you’re probably not confusing him with other Prince Harrys.)
I’m a fan of rom-coms, Korean dramas, Austen/Bronte novels, and all things with a happy ending. I counter my wild romantic notions with a healthy dose of cynicism and skepticism. I can differentiate between fiction and fantasy. These stories do not happen in Real Life.
Enter Harry and Meghan starring in their own rom-com Starstruck.
Meghan is an American divorcée who works for a living and has a difficult family. She has a good attitude and a bright personality. She is Every Girl. One day she meets this guy. He has a history of being a bad boy (wounded boy who lost his mum acting out), but turned himself around and served in the military (for real, two tours in Afghanistan) for ten years flying helicopters. He’s good looking and seems to have a lot of money. And it turns out he’s a British prince. He’s a composite of every male character in every rom-com, chick lit, romance movie/book/series.
They get married in a fairy tale wedding. And they live happily ever after.
Until . . . the sequel in which Harry decides to leave the royal family (dun, dun, DUN!). The British media have dubbed it Megxit.
The romantic in me is a bit sad that the fairy tale fell apart. The feminist in me is quite happy and is able to spin this in a good way for my romantic side.
So Harry’s not a prince now. He’s still most of the romantic package (bad boy, wounded soul, veteran, pilot, has money, etc.). Meghan no longer has to sit around looking pretty at the behest of the queen. She can fulfill her own dreams and live her own meaningful life.
The best (read: romantic) part is Harry chose her. He didn’t wimp out and buckle to his family’s wishes, and he defends her against the media (in the UK the coverage tends to be borderline racist and mean toward Meghan). He is going to be the supportive husband she deserves and the father Archie deserves. He is their champion, not their savior.
In fairy tale terms, Cinderella marries the prince and becomes the CEO of her own environmentally friendly cleaning products corporation. The kingdom becomes a democracy with elected officials and Prince Charming gets to use his private tutor education to help those less fortunate (like the shoeless, for instance). He could even take on the responsibility of raising the kids and making sure dinner is on the table every night.
Harry and Meghan’s story is the kind of feminist romance I’m happy to celebrate. And in Real Life too.
As the story continues to be written, let’s let them live happily ever after.