When Santa gave me a Barbie Dream House for Christmas when I was an itty bitty girl, I'm not sure that he realized exactly what he was doing to me. Though I didn't realize it at the time, construction was already in my blood. The Barbies and the outfits and the cute Ken dolls were fun to play with, but the Barbie Dream Home was the ULTIMATE piece of my Barbie collection. For I had watched my father and his cousin Dale build our home. I came of age using construction two by fours as imaginary Olympic-inspired balance beams. I had not yet learned that girls can build stuff, too, but I was well on my way to discovering such a thing.
I'm thirty-eight now. I no longer play with Barbies, and to be quite frank with you I don't really follow fashion trends anymore. I dress the way I want to dress, and usually I acquire the pieces of my wardrobe from second hand shops instead of Barbie's beloved shopping malls. But I still have a bit of Barbie in my blood. Like Barbie, I do love my closet. But it's not the rows of shoes or the dresses on hangers that impress me. It's the hardwood floors, the wooden walls painted a pale shade of mint, the cabinetry and the trim that I cut by myself!
I've still got a touch of Barbie doll in me, but not in the way that Mattel intended. For I want to BUILD Barbie's Dream House for her. Gone are the days when I combed Barbie's hair and tied tiny bows into her golden locks. And gone are the days when I sat around waiting for Ken to show up in a convertible, wearing expensive clothes and gifting me with new dresses and diamonds and tiaras and chocolates and the latest trends in the perfume industry.
Tomorrow is my first day on my very first construction job, y'all. I'll get paid to run a saw and build stuff! I feel like I've won the lottery! I'm just living the dream, man....
A few people have asked if I think it will be hard to be the only woman on the construction site, but I'm not worried in the slightest because I KNOW that I shall not fail. I don't care how heavy the boards become that I must lift, or how high I must climb on a rooftop to get the job done. I don't care how sore my muscles will be at the end of the workday, y'all. You know what matters to me? Doing what I love to do and watching people become wide-eyed as I kick some serious butt on the construction site. Yes, I will undoubtedly make mistakes. And that's okay, because mistakes are how we LEARN. My goals are to learn, to grow, and to prove that sassy southern gals can be smart in their heads, pretty in their hearts, AND we can build really cool things.
Ain't no shame in this game! Life is meant to be lived, and by golly I'm gonna use this opportunity to SHINE for my Creator!
But make no mistakes about it.... I do love Barbie's pink Jeep. I actually own one. It's a 1957 Willys Jeep, Pepto Bismol pink, and my dad bought it for me when I was fourteen years old. I still own it, though it needs a new restoration. I shall restore it, I can promise you that much. And this former Barbie girl will proudly drive her pink Jeep to her job as an assistant carpenter one day. It's just a matter of TIME.....