Unconditional Love

The royal baby has arrived!

Imagine being venerated by multitudes from birth, before birth, based solely on bloodline. On loan to his parents, Prince George of Cambridge belongs to Britain.

Nevermind whether he will want to be a monarch, or if he is suited for such a life, this baby is third in line for the throne and a king he will be. Unless of course he commits some royal blasphemy. Then again, Charles married a divorcee, so maybe the monarchy is loosening up.

Most Americans are tolerant of the pomp that attends these royal milestones. Some may criticize the inequities of a class-structured society; some may condemn the patriarchal policies; others may object to the phenomenal wealth and privilege enjoyed by a group of people who are only nominally in charge. But who would deny Queen Elizabeth’s dedication and probity? Who would discount her decades of unstinting service, or her belief in the importance of her destiny?

I think we may be a little jealous of that idealism, that unbreakable faith. Whether we believe in The Queen’s mission or not, she does, and in so doing, she gives the British people something to believe in, a standard to live by, a notion that some things are worth keeping.

Prince George will be swaddled in adoration and courtesy. His upbringing will be a collaborative effort, a painstaking labor of love. He will be groomed for excellence in the hope that one day he will be a man fit to be king.

I’m not sure I’d elect this noble life for myself—the security measures required, the lack of privacy—but there is something to be said for being the object of high expectation. What would the rest of us accomplish with that much encouragement? If we were told each day how fine we were, what kind of people might we be?

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Published by

Jean Ryan

Jean Ryan, a native Vermonter, lives in Napa, California. Her stories and essays have appeared in a variety of journals and anthologies. She has also published a novel, LOST SISTER. Her short story collections, SURVIVAL SKILLS and LOVERS AND LONERS, are available online. STRANGE COMPANY, a collection of short nature essays, is available in paperback as well as digital and audio editions.

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