I spent the day at the beach and did something my little girl self never got to do - I built a sandcastle for Barbie. Barbie's Mermaid Palace.
My Palace had a shell-lined walkway from the driveway where Barbie could park her Winnebago and purple Trans-Am. Yes, my internal Barbie is a 1970's Malibu version.
My Palace included a formal living room with a table, shell-back chairs and even a floral arrangement. There was a kitchen, a powder room, a heart-shaped pool, a hot tub, a master bedroom with plenty of closet space and a big round bed.
And let's not forget this was prime beach front property.
I stood back from my sand construction and was pleased. Then I realized that when I was building my palace I had done exactly as I wanted with absolutely no regard for Ken.
When did I start giving so much deference to Ken anyway? I suppose it was at some point in my emerging womanhood when the Barbies got packed away because some adolescent Ken didn't like girls who played with dolls and preferred someone who had the sophistication to read Nancy Drew books instead.
What options did Barbie have anyway? There was G.I. Joe. The Great American Hero! Joe was always off defending Barbie's right to have all the shoes, outfits and any career she wanted. Come to think of it, what was so great about Ken? Why was he working on his tan while Joe was fighting the enemy?
Maybe Joe was the occasional furlough visit, scratching an itch and fulfilling Barbie's patriotic duty. Bye, Joe. Go, Joe.
For a time there was some guy named Allen. Red hair and freckles. I just assumed he was Barbie's gay husband. Barbie needed someone around to appreciate all her looks and highlight her hair. That three story dream house - with elevator - wasn't going to decorate itself.
I thought maybe there was no hope for Barbie to have a fulfilling relationship. A plastic soul mate. How was I ever going to figure out my life if I couldn't make sense of Barbie's? I was about to write Ken off as just a piece of plastic. A girl's first significant formed plastic, non-vibrating.
But then I went to Target and there he was.
Sweet Talking Ken. He's on amazon.com if you want to take a look at him. He's the most beautiful thing I've ever seen. And heard.
You push a button. You say whatever you want. Ken records it. You push a button. Ken says your words back to you - in his voice! You can make Ken say whatever you want. Now Barbie can have it all. The dream house. The cars. The clothes. The handsome man who says the right things and can be posed any which way.
Maybe there is a happily ever after - for Barbie and for me. As for the Mermaid Palace, the tide came in.
Good thing about me: I've gained and I've lost but I've never gained more than I lost. Bonus: I did good drinking water today.
I am thankful for: the Pastor coming home soon so I can snuggle up to his warm body in bed.