When I was a little girl, one of my favorite games was What Shall I Be? The Exciting Game of Career Girls. (Selchow and Righter, 1966). My Mom gave it to me for my eighth birthday. Frequently, I would negotiate with my friends to trade off Barbie time for game time when we got together in my parent’s basement.
Careers for women – how cutting edge was that? Our choices: Airline Hostess, Ballerina, Nurse, Model, Actress, and Teacher. For a review of this edition and the 1976 edition (much more enlightened but still a ways to go) see Deanna Dahlsad’s Blog.
My friend Jeanne Craft was very focused and almost always chose the nurse. She wanted to help people. Maybe the game was a bit prophetic. Today, Dr. Jeanne Craft is a five star rated physician practicing Pediatric Critical Care Medicine. Her courageous quick thinking in diagnosing and saving a baby with infant botulism brought her to international attention when she was profiled on Roma Downey’s “It’s a Miracle.”
As for me, I never could decide on just one career. I would pick a different one every time. The choices were not exactly what I was shooting for but some of the roles had things that I liked about them. The funny thing is that over my own career I did end up exploring a few of these roles. Modeling turned out to be a great way to earn extra money when I was in college. Community Theatre helped me forge a closer relationship with my future mother-in-law early in my career. (A great actress I was not and will never be.) As the Mom of two active boys, I’ve nursed my share of bumps and bruises. In 2008, teaching graduate courses on Leadership at Innovation at Grand Canyon University was both challenging and enlightening. And, my love for travel by air was satisfied when my role as a corporate executive had me flying around the world 13 times in a 3 year period. Never did master the ballerina thing. That was way too much hard work.
While my feminist friends probably shudder at the very thought of this game, I remember those days fondly. It was a simpler time and a simpler place.
If I was redesigning this game today, my game would have choices like CEO, Entrepreneur, Investor, Author, Mom, and Speaker. You see, that’s what I grew up to be. I’m enjoying being a ‘career girl’. It is exciting. I wonder what’s next. Time to roll the dice.
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