19-years ago today, a confused-curly ball of teenage mess walked into our lives and for a few hours made us forget about all our weird teenage problems by entertaining us with hers. 

Teen Vogue

You got that right folks, it was exactly 19 years ago today when Disney introduced and blessed us with one of the finest actors, Anne Hathway, playing the role of the most awkward, rebellious teenager who initially hated the idea of being a princess in the movie. 

It just feels like yesterday when I was relating hard to Mia and her teenage woes while secretly wishing that I had her luck of being an heir to a made-up kingdom in Europe. ( I still do) 


Also for the record, the then-teenage me always thought that Genovia was an actual place IRL but grew up to realise that Geneva was the actual place and Genovia was a made-up kingdom. 

Please tell me I wasn’t the only one who thought that. 


Now as someone who grew up watching Mia’s metamorphosis from a clumsy adolescent to a rather mature princess, I think it is safe to say that every time I watch Princess Diaries as a tween, it feels like I’m still waiting for maturity and puberty to hit me. 


Is it weird if I still manage to find some kind of comfort in watching Mia’s life come together? While she tries to juggle her crush, her friendship, the newfound royal responsibilities that come with her makeover along with the pressure of living up to her grandma’s expectations?


I find comfort in how she resents growing up and is scared of change. I find comfort in how she holds on to her old life as she’s hesitant to walk into her new one. 


You know, now that I come to think about it, Mia was quite confident with the way she looked, she was comfortable in her own skin even before the makeover,.

The makeover was more of her grandma’s demand than Mia’s choice. But she didn’t really let vanity makeover change her in any way, Mia still wanted to be the same ordinary person in school and elsewhere.  


Somewhere Mia taught me that it is ok to be imperfect and clumsy. I grew up to realise that all she was trying to do was to hold on to a part of herself while transforming into what was expected out of her. 


She taught me how to never let go of the real you , no matter how much societal pressure you’re under. 

From accepting my frizzy curly hair to helping me love myself the way I am, Princess Mia Thermopolis of Genovia has managed to indirectly give us some insightful life lessons through the years. I don’t think I can ever thank her enough for that. 

From a teen to a tween, it’s like every time I re-watch Princess Diaries, I learn something new that twerks my perception and outlook towards life.