This is Fulla. Well, it’s OUR Fulla.
Fulla is actually a doll marketed for Muslim girls so that they can have a Barbie-like doll.
We bought a Fulla hijab on ebay and put it on one of our existing dolls. I am very pleased with how she turned out. She will become a Character Player most likely. I can’t see Leah raising her to the level of Core Player unless she gets to know more Muslims through school.
My main reason for adding Fulla and the Ramesh family was because of how Leah reacted to a little Asian girl a few months ago.
Leah had been going to a pre-school in Boston where about 1/3 of the kids were Chinese and about 1/3 were Indian. The remaining third were mostly Anglo-Saxon – with the exception of Leah and one darling black girl named Olivia.
Leah had come home talking about a crush on Evan Yang. She did not recognize any ethnic differences yet – I could tell based on different things she said. Then one day we were in Whole Foods having dinner and an Asian lady and her two daughters were seated two tables away. The smaller girl was eyeing Leah’s doll from afar.
“I think she wants to see your doll,” I said.
“No,” Leah said, “She doesn’t speak English”
I was shocked. How could she move so quickly from not understanding what I meant when I said “Asian” to deciding they were foreigners who didn’t speak the language?
We went back and forth. I was saying, “Honey, they probably do. Just show her your doll and you will find out.”
I started to get a sense that they could hear us and I felt like an a$$ about it. At least, I thought, they aren’t hearing me say the opposite. – you know something stupid like, “They don’t look like us, they must be Ferners. ”
When the mom finally spoke she did so with a typical Boston accent and if Leah had been an adult I would have smugly launched into an I-Told-You-So diatribe.
On a more practical level however, I was left feeling sad that Leah could so quickly see them as “other” when I knew that we would be back in Colorado soon and there would likely be no Asians at all in her pre-school class.
That’s when I decided that we had to find not only Asian dolls but also Indian and Arab Muslim. Of course it would be nice to also have Southeast Asians, Aboriginal Australians, Persian Muslims, etc, etc but I have doubts about my own abilities to pull this off.
I haven’t decided yet whether Fulla will be married or single or whether she will eventually have children, but for now I am happy that we have her.