I never played with Barbie. I had her but I found it weird to put my voice into another form. I found her hard to dress up and she wasn't cuddly like my baby dolls. I could do her hair, but only once. The best thing about Barbie, to me, was the way she could do the splits and I wanted to be able to do that. I practiced a lot!
But I could play with my baby dolls all day long, pretending that I had a little one of my own to feed, change, care for and, on really great days, take to the park or on an outing in her stroller or backpack carrier. I called her Cecelia. I had many versions of her including the crazed Cabbage Patch doll phase.
So, when my kids asked me to see the Barbie movie, I was skeptical. I needed a little convincing. Apparently Barbie was raising quite a buzz on social media. After a couple conversations, it became obvious that this wasn't going to be a simple movie but, instead, a movie with important messages, intended to reach into audiences that may otherwise not even consider such things as the patriarchy, diversity and women's empowerment. Probably the part that convinced me was trying to picture a world where men are kind-of an afterthought. That's hard to imagine. So, we donned our pink outfits, painted our toenails and headed off for a family night out.
I'll leave the analysis of the subtle and overt lessons about all the ways women are held back, oppressed and caught in the double bind dilemma to others because there is a lot of talk about this movie - some great and some not so great depending on who you are and what you believe. Honestly, the messages in this movie are many of the same messages you hear from me every day - all dressed up in pink - which is my favourite colour!
However, I WILL share my most profound realization - this movie didn't shock my kids. They already know this stuff and their impression of this movie was that it was stating the obvious. It's not that they have the solutions but they see clearly through the challenges they face in a system that wasn't created for, or by, women (or anyone who is not a white male). They are already awake to the systemic and often unconscious biases that exist and, in many ways, still counting on us to pave the way to a better, more equitable, tomorrow. Is it "never-never" land? I hope not. I hope we don't let them down. I believe it's time to get busy, disrupt the status quo, state the obvious and empower change.
And, I'd love to hear your thoughts too - join us at the Empowered Women's Circle for some lively conversations about how the women in our circle are taking inspired actions toward a world that the next generation will be proud of. Our circle has a space just for you!
Another night out on the town!
I'm having so much fun enjoying my grown children this summer. It's a whole new phase when we can take in live entertainment on the patio and share the intricacies of life, love and the legacy we leave with our one precious life!
Ten questions for Jeremy - this is fun!!
As we head into the last month of summer vacation, may you see the world for what it is, savour the magic in the moments, feel ALL the feelings, be truly awakened to the reality of our world in new and inspiring ways and, simply, enjoy the minutes within your days.
These sound like simple tasks but they are not easy - to live this way takes intentionality and a deep knowing that you are the curator of your life - keep using your agency on your own behalf.
Today, I head off to see a friend I haven't seen in a very long time. It's a long drive that will open space for me to immerse myself in thoughts, feelings and expansive creative energy - there is such goodness in these summer days!