- The sayings of Princess Diana are collated in the new book ‘I’m Going To Be Me’
- Her true spirit always shone through in each utterance despite her constrictions
- In the book almost every sentence is painfully revealing of her shaky hold on life
I’M GOING TO BE ME: THE PEOPLE’S PRINCESS REVEALED IN HER OWN WORDS
by Phil Dampier (Barzipan Publishing £8.95)
‘I no longer want to live someone else’s idea of who and what I should be. I’m going to be me.’
Those words, among the many poured out by Princess Diana to her voice coach in 1992, inspired the title for this short book, a collection of The sayings of Diana, from her childhood to the week of her death.
The strong sense that emerges is that, certainly in terms of the words she spoke, Diana was never anything other than herself.
Diana was known for her witty remarks, when she was greeted by the Queen’s corgi, she said: ‘Get it out of here, it’s licking my tan off.’ (file image)
Yes, she was severely constricted inside the fake fairytale of her marriage, but in her every utterance her true spirit always shone through — that extraordinary Diana spirit, half luminous angel, half basket-case; always needy, her sense of being unloved springing deep from her own childhood; and her bursts of happiness, always brief and only the thin layer on top of an ocean of low self-esteem.
Just as many members of the public wore ‘Don’t do it, Di!’ badges on her wedding day, while reading this I longed to say: ‘Don’t say it, Di!’.
Almost every sentence is painfully revealing of her shaky hold on life and her tendency towards unhappiness.
Of her mother she said: ‘She made me feel as if I should never have been born.’
Of the Royal Family she said: ‘Little did they realise that the individual was crucifying herself inside because she didn’t think she was good enough.’
To her sons, who have taken her words to heart, she said: ‘It’s not sissy to show your feelings.’
Often she had two contrasting takes on a single event: after her wedding day, she wrote to her nanny: ‘I just absolutely thought I was the luckiest girl in the world,’ and to someone else (Andrew Morton? There are no footnotes in the book) she said: ‘I felt like a sacrificial lamb.’
At its best, her schoolgirl, mischievous spirit was a match for Prince Philip’s. She even made a Philip-worthy un-PC remark when she met a one-armed man in Australia: ‘I bet you have fun chasing the soap around the bath.’
I’M GOING TO BE ME: THE PEOPLE’S PRINCESS REVEALED IN HER OWN WORDS by Phil Dampier (Barzipan Publishing £8.95)
It’s good to be reminded of her impish rejoinder to her father-in-law when he warned her, at the time of her divorce: ‘If you don’t behave, my girl, we’ll have your title removed.’
She replied: ‘My title is a lot older than yours [referring to the lineage of the Spencer family].’
She could be hilariously waspish, too, once remarking: ‘Charles must be wearing beer goggles to have an affair with Camilla.’
Her training in witty, rude remarks about other females perhaps came from her boarding school years.
When greeted by the Queen’s corgi, she said: ‘Get it out of here, it’s licking my tan off.’ That pronoun ‘it’ for the dog is revealing about her lack of empathy with animals; she also loathed horses and polo and said: ‘In another incarnation, the last thing I would ever want to be is a horse.’
She could not have been more out of place in that corgi-loving, horse-riding family.
There are poignant hints of how she wanted her life to develop. ‘I’d like three more babies,’ she said on a foreign tour, ‘but I haven’t told my husband yet.’
Asked what she would like as an epitaph on her grave, she suggested: ‘A great hope crushed in its infancy.’
Courtesy: Daily Mail Online