Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Tuesday Treasures

                            What do you treasure the most?

Person – Place – Thing. I treasure all of those and more. But when I asked myself that question, I had to ponder a moment. And as this blog is about creating a family and/or personal museum(s), I opened the doors to my museum and let my eyes wandered from the people, locality, and possession, and found that
I treasured it all. But what was my favorite? What was the one or more things that inspired me to start my family museum? Answer: My Barbie Dolls!

Now, don’t shake your head, roll your eyes, or let out a guffaw. I am sure that your museum has things that may provoke the same reaction from me. However, remember we are what stuff we have. We hold onto things that are dear to us, many of which are very personal possessions that do or do not have great monetary value, which is really beside the point anyway. Therefore, here is a brief story about my Barbie’s taken from a much longer account.   

The first things I put in the museum were my three Barbie dolls. I lost their original outfits, so I purchased designer ensembles that I found in the Barbie catalog.  When I got them dressed, I actually felt giddy with the memory of how happy I was when I played with them, dreaming about my future and all I can be and do.

I got my first Barbie when I was 10 years old. Ancient by today’s standards where girls that age are far more – or try to be – sophisticated and would not even think of playing with a Barbie doll. My circa 1960 Barbie had the latest hairstyle, the bubble cut. Auburn color and very fashionable. For the next five years, I lived vicariously through my dolls. What else could a teenage girl who lived out in no‑mans‑land (Mokena, IL) do but fantasize about what can be. But as I dreamed of my future, I didn’t realize that not only my dolls were in danger, but so were my rights.

On a dreary afternoon, certain family members who decided it was time for me to grow up, being I was disinclined to do so, kidnapped my Barbie’s. I will never forget that day.

When I got home from a rough day at school, all I wanted to do was escape into Barbie's world. I crawled under the dining room table . . . I had set up Barbie's home there because I didn't have a bedroom of my own to play in. My brother got the bedroom. (I slept in the living room, dining room, the kitchen, but that’s another story) . . . and discovered my Barbie’s and all of their things were gone! I got very angry. I went to my mother to find out who took them and where they were. Much to my surprise, it was my mother and brother who kidnapped my dolls. They were in it together. They said it was for my own good. That I needed to grow up! Stop playing with dolls. Read books. Do my homework.

I was outraged, hurt and confused. Right then and there, I wanted to put my hands on my brother's precious Lionel train set and trash it! Yet little did I know then that after asserting my rights, that moment started me on developing the strong belief I had in myself to defend and protect, which served me well as I went through life.

Thirty-eight years later, I found my Barbie’s, dressed them up in new fashion ensembles, reapplied their makeup, combed their hair, and proudly displayed them in the family museum. I felt a deep satisfaction for not only saving them, but also for preserving my dreams.

So take this Tuesday and treasure the memory of that day.

Next Post: Wednesday Wishes

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