We Meet Again
Ask anyone-male or female, young or old, everyone knows her. Chances are you owned one (or many), and if not you, your sister, your mom, your aunt..your classmates… maybe even all of the above. Who am I talking about?
One name: Barbie.
Hard to imagine a world without Barbie. No truer words have been spoken (written), at least for me.
I received my first Barbie in 1984. She was literally called “My First Barbie.” Over the years I would end up with Tropical Barbie, Dr. Barbie, Unicef Barbie and Skipper. So many adventures with those dolls! It unlocked a whole new world of creativity. (I even wanted to sew for them- I touched on that here). They all would have great fun cooking their kitchen, lounging in their living room, eating in their dining room, taking bubble baths, lounging by the pool, even taking a spin with her friends in her Corvette.
As a youngster I was extremely shy. One afternoon, I heard the neighbor kids screaming and splashing around in the lake outside my window. I didn’t know how to swim and was too scared to play with the other kids. I turned away and filled up my Barbie plastic pool in the bathroom sink. Tropical Barbie swam around with her friends.
The rest of the story is the same. For the next 9 years I would be completely enamored by Barbie. She was the only toy I wanted and we spent countless hours together. It was always just me and my Barbies. They were always out, ready for the next adventure.
When I was 8th grade, a classmate came over and saw my Barbies on display. She asked me if I still played with them. I said yes. I was 12. The way she asked me made me feel uncomfortable, like I was too old to play with Barbies. I was embarrassed. That would be the last day Barbie and I would take an adventure together. I remember crying while putting them in their Barbie Case for the last time.
My mom and I put everything in storage. I felt happy knowing they were safe. Until they weren’t.
Years later the storage flooded and all my Barbies and accessories were ruined!! They all had to be thrown away. It makes me sick thinking about it. So. many. memories. She was my only friend throughout childhood. She didn’t care that I didn’t know how to swim, roller skate or had never climbed a tree. In some ways she’s made me who I am today- a fashion lover, the color pink lover, and having grown up in the 80s, somewhat gaudy/glamorous taste, lol.
With the current release of the Barbie movie, I was reminded of my old friend. The last Barbie I received was Unicef Barbie for Christmas 1989, gifted by my grandparents. I screamed in delight when opening the box. She was just so beautiful!! Out of curiosity I searched for my old friend online. She was there, new in the box, and surprisingly affordable. I kept looking at that computer screen until The Viking told me to “just buy it” (as he always does)
Of course I was reluctant because I’m 40 years old and don’t need a doll, lol. And Pia is enough to handle. But something about Barbie…
The Viking bought her for me.
The minute I unwrapped the box and saw her I bawled my eyes out. Tears of happiness, tears of sadness, but most of all, the fact she hadn’t changed in 34 years.
Although I had changed, her spirit for adventure was still there.