Curly Q doesn’t have 2 or 3 Barbie dolls to play with. She has a small army of them. A small, blonde army – armed with dozens of teeny-tiny high heels and other accessories – and everything a little girl could dream of when it comes to playing with Barbies.
But my little princess isn’t content with that.
Last Christmas, Santa brought Curly Q an AWESOME three-story house for her Barbies to play in. It has a spiral staircase and an elevator. She also received 2 Ken Dolls – one of which looks remarkably similar to her cute Daddy. (He is less than thrilled with my comparison.) And Little Man picked out the perfect Barbie convertible to give her for them to all zoom around in together.
But my little princess still isn’t content with all of that, either.
Now before you go all judgy-judgy on my little girl, let me tell you that she isn’t a whiny brat about her toys. She is a grateful child that appreciates what she has been given and the collection of special things in her little room.
I think we have only given her 3 or 4 of the Barbies in her collection. The rest were given to her by a dear friend who had outgrown her Barbies and wanted to give them to someone who would appreciate and enjoy them. (Think Toy Story 3 for a minute when Andy finds the perfect little girl to personally give his toys to before he rides away for college.)
Curly Q loves to play with her toys. Just not her Barbies.
And the other day she told me why:
“Mommy, I need to tell you why I don’t play with my Barbies very often. They all look the same. I only have one with dark hair and dark skin and the rest look just alike. That’s no fun because in real life we are all so different and beautiful!” - CurlyQ
This is coming from a little girl that feels a little different from the rest of her peers. With a lack of cultural diversity here in northern Maine, the differences of hair color, height, and weight seem to stand out a bit more. When skin color isn’t really an issue, physical differences often become the source of ridicule and shaming among children.
My little girl is taller than everyone in her class. She has beautiful curly red hair and a sparkling personality to go with it. She is friendly beyond measure and remarkably articulate. And there are some kids that shy away from her because she looks different than they do.
But I am so glad that my little girl gets that diversity is a wonderful and beautiful thing.
I am so glad that she isn’t scared to look for the beauty in what makes each of us unique. I am glad she looks beyond someone’s appearance to see more.
It makes me so proud of her in so many ways.
I’m even prouder that “sameness” is a bit boring to her.
I grew up in middle Georgia and the lack of cultural diversity in our school wasn’t really an issue. We were being raised by parents that had lived through de-segregation and some still clung to the remnants of racism. Some of my dearest friends growing up looked very different from me but I am so thankful that I knew to look deeper than skin value to the person inside.
Diversity is the spice of life and we are all created in God’s image. And I am so glad that my little girl has learned that lesson. Even if it was learned from an army of Barbie Dolls.