Attention mothers of girly girls everywhere, we have a new hero. Her name is Lauren Marbe, a 16-year-old girl being hailed as the next Stephen Hawking or Albert Einstein after a MENSA test revealed she has an IQ of 161 -- a full point higher than either of the revered scientists.
Only Lauren doesn't fit the dweeb role society has built for smart women. She's blond. Gorgeous. And among her favorite things? Nail polish and fake tans.
This girl genius sounds so normal I could cry.
They'd be tears of joy, tears from a mother of a girl who loves all things pink and sparkly. My daughter's bedroom decor is an amalgam of Disney's most feminine characters, from Merida in Brave to Tinker Bell, from Vanellope from Wreck-It Ralph to Princess Tiana from The Princess and the Frog.
Among a certain set, a daughter's passion for pink, for nail polish, for sparkles, is a sign of a major parenting fail. I should, it seems, have been spending my days crafting science projects for her and pushing toy trucks in her path, anything to help her embrace the power of her brain.
As a matter of fact, we push books in our house and we have always encouraged play with a variety of toys, created a variety of projects. As a result, I have a daughter who is at the top of her class in most subjects. She's a voracious reader.
She's smart, like Lauren. And just like Lauren, she is true to what she likes, not what society has told her to like.
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I'm not sure when the message of the feminist movement changed from girl power to "power to girls who fit one particular mold," but we have gone from trying to make sure our girls feel equal to boys to demeaning all things "girly," as if a color in and of itself can define a person.
Remember the outcry over the LEGO Friends? When girls who dared enjoy building with something pink or purple and playing with minifigures that look like THEM instead of their brothers were being classified as mini airheads in the making? Raising a daughter who embraces pink and princesses, for many women, is tantamount to thumbing your nose at the powerful ladies who worked for generations to shatter the glass ceilings.
But not for me. Not for my daughter. Not for girls like Lauren Marbe.
Girls like Lauren are a godsend to moms like me. They're proof from the future (my daughter is 7, nine years younger than the teenage genius) that "girly" is not synonymous with stupid.
Bravo to her. Something tells me she's going to go far -- because she is true to herself.
Do you fight against the stigma of girly girls in your house?
Image via trishhhh/Flickr