According to Nicole, Ballet Wishes is the cutest Barbie ever. My daughter loves it. Nicole starts her summer dance program on June 9th so we have been looking around at things that are dancer appropriate. When we went to the supermarket to buy a few items, we stopped in the Barbie section. For a long time, Nicole has been looking at several of the Barbies. We were looking at the Fashionista Barbies, Infant Caretaker Barbie, and Barbie Pet Boutique Shop. None of the other Barbies stood out so much to Nicole as the Ballet Wishes Barbie.
I have a confession. When I was Nicole's age, I never had any Barbies. My mom was one of those rare moms that did not buy Barbie. I always loved my cousin's Barbies and my friends, most of them had Barbies and Barbie houses too, but I never had one. I would sit down and watch other girls play with their new Barbies. If I was lucky, I might be given permission to play with other kids old Barbies. My parents were together my whole childhood. We could most definitely afford numerous Barbies if we wanted them, but I think my parents saw Barbie symbolic as the icon of American materialism. They did not want Barbie to become my role model. I honestly don't look at Barbie that way. It's just a doll. To me, Barbie is symbolic of one of the toys I was forbidden to have. I had many other dolls, just never Barbie.
I think of things in a different way. I try to give my daughter everything, but in a different way. I make her earn it. All last week she had helped me with day to day routines, and I expected more of her assistance. Nicole has been polite and respectful, and she has tried to put other's needs before her own. When she saw that particular Barbie, I could see her eyes widen. You know when someone wants something badly, but has the self-discipline to know enough not to beg. She turned away from it. We've walked by this particular doll I don't know how many times, and it was just the same most of the times, we just walked by. Not today though... I just knew that Nicole wanted her. Even though it was more than I wanted to spend, it wasn't about money, not about materialism. It was a special gift that she had earned. Nicole is really good with her toys. She never even opened the doll to play with. She wants to keep her doll in the box so that it still looks the same.
Barbie to me is symbolic of what a child wants to be. Many ten year old girls, including my own daughter, wish and dream of being a ballerina. When I was that age, I loved dancing and twirling and gymnastics. I did a lot of tumbling on the lawn. Not every little girl has these dreams, every girl dreams a little different. One girl might want to be a model, a neonatal nurse, a doctor, a pet caregiver, a horse rider, a convertible driver and even grow up to live at a Dreamhouse. Barbie taps into children's dreams. Some people might question my judgement as a mother for buying such a toy. I liked this Barbie in particular because it matched my daughter's dreams. She dreams of being a ballerina, of dancing on Broadway just like from in the show "Dance Moms," Chloe Lukasiak who dances her way to the Nationals. That's my daughter's dreams.
As for my dreams, I'm too old to spend time playing Barbie. I guess I out grew that time where a little girl cherishes her precious dolls. I was preoccupied. I was the girl that liked to climb trees and jump off rocks. I used to catch tadpoles and frogs at the pond. I played with ants and beetles and bugs, thus why I grew up to major in Biology. I liked a lot of boys games like marbles, trucks and toy soldiers so I guess in my parent's defense, for a girl, except for when my friends played, I really wasn't that into Barbie. I was more of a Tom boy. My daughter is different. She likes her dolls. My daughter is crazy about Barbie so I guess that's going to be a part of her childhood. I hope she grows up and remembers the little things that I did to help make her childhood special for her. These days go by fast. Before you know it, you're a grown up looking at your children, and their children's children. I really loved giving Nicole this surprise.
If you have a Barbie story, feel free to share in the comments. Thank you for reading and sharing. Have a great day.