On Kissing Frogs
I received a wonderful comment on my blog “Real Love” that inspired this commentary. She found promising frogs, kissed them and now has a garden filled with frogs and not a Prince in sight. The story of the Princess and the Frog is an enduring story and theme, with an obvious message and less obvious suggestions.
The obvious theme of tales such as this, including Beauty and the Beast and others, is what’s immediately obvious about someone, may not be who they are and love can transform them. Love can transform us, it can bring out our nobler side, give us strength we never knew we had, make us more playful, our lives more directed and difficult time more endurable. It doesn’t make us more handsome or beautiful, except perhaps within our own eyes.
I don’t know if these fairy tales are completely harmless. In these enchanted stories, there is a resident evil that cast a spell and created a beast or a frog from a Prince. So the kiss wasn’t merely transforming a scary or lowly critter into a handsome hunk, it overcame evil too. She was beautiful, lonely and l,onging and he was appreciative, handsome and wealthy and they lived happily ever after. What’s wrong with that?
Does she have to beautiful? Does he have to be a Prince? Is the restoration permanent? Do they have to develop a rapport? Overcome barriers and obstacles or is it all a smooth, unobstructed path? Is this truly the foundation of real love? We were raised on these fairy tales and we somehow bought in to the messages: both obvious and hidden.
Perhaps a more realistic story about the results fo kissing frongs may be “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” by Robert Louis Stevenson, The classic horror tale that I see played out constantly. The brilliant Dr. Jekyll begin transformed into the monsterous Mr. Hyde. We meet one, and in time meet the other and wonder which is the true person, the Jekyll or Hyde guy? They both are. We see the potential of Dr. Jekyll and the reality of Mr. Hyde. And love’s first kiss will cause Hyde to hide? No, it typically encourages Hyde to come out and dominate the relationship.
Love’s first kiss can be transformational, it can bring out what’s within us, but can’t reinvent what’s within us. To experience real love you don’t have to rescue someone, don’t need to be beautiful, don’t need to be or acquire the status of royalty, and although gratitude and appreciation are critical to real love, they’re not the only elements you need to experience it.
Don’t go around kissing frogs: it’s disgusting. If you don’t believe me, ask any frog.
What’s yoiur opinion? I’d like to hear from you. Please reply on this blog or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks for reading. Prof. Dave