Childhood Memory: Dolls

As a child, I had five dolls, all with soft bodies and china faces.

girl playing with baby doll

Ruth, from Mom and Dad, had big blue eyes, and delicate, apple-blossom cheeks. Doris, whose dark eyes and rosy cheeks reminded me of Aunt Edith, who gave her to me. Bonnie and Betty, not as large, but lovely. Janette, the smallest, completed my collection. I cherished my dolls, but Janette was my constant companion.

A huge willow tree on our country property outside of Darrington, Washington had two sturdy branches that crossed and made a seat. I spent hours snuggled against the tree trunk, reading every book I could get my hands on. Janette slept cuddled in my arms.

The first heavy snow of the season put an end to my tree-sitting.  Janette went missing. Dad, Mom, my two brother and I searched everywhere: beneath the willow, throughout the house, and in the garden. The snow deepened, stopping our outside search.  I cried bitter tears. What kind of mother lost her youngest child?

Weeks grew into months. I mourned the loss of Janette. At last, warm spring winds melted the snow. One day my little brother raced into the house. He held up a bedraggled object and shouted, “Look, everyone. I found her in the garden!”

I stared in horror. Could this be Janette? The back of her head had come apart. Her china face was cracked from lying under the snow. Her eyes had sunk into her broken head. “Oh, Janette, I am so sorry!” I cried, holding her broken body close.

 

“Let me see,” Dad said. He washed the mud from her painted face and took off her filthy dress. He stuffed Janette’s head with clean cotton, so her eyes went back to their normal position. Mom made her a new dress and a frilly cap to cover the back of her head.

“She isn’t pretty like she was,” my little brother said. “Her face is all cracked.” 

“I don’t care!” I looked at Ruth. At Doris. At Bonnie and Betty, then  back at Janette. “I love her best of all. She needs me the most.”

* * *

Wisdom from the child I once was, who still lives within me, has served me well. There is a special place in my heart for those who need me the most. Jesus said that when we care for “the least of these,” we serve Him. I learned a [ valuable lesson from my broken doll. From a father and mother who painstakingly took the time to restore their grieving daughter’s doll. Most of all, from my Heavenly Father, Whose Son came to seek and save the lost and broken.

There are many hurting persons this Christmas season who desperately need encouragement. The best thing we can do may well be to simply listen and show that we care.  If we can help others as we travel life’s journey, then our living truly will not be in vain. My prayer is for each of us to share our love with those seeking hope and light in this troubled world.

7 thoughts on “Childhood Memory: Dolls

  1. Touching story, Colleen. My sister and I lost our beloved teddy bear one Halloween night, and we were beside ourselves. So, so glad when he was found the next day. What a long wait you had to be reunited with poor broken Janette, but you made the best of it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks, gals. I always so appreciate your taking the time to comment. I am so glad Susan set me up, first with Reece’s Ramblings, then moving it to be part of the Colleen’s Creations website.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Thank you for such a precious memory. I am amazed at your childhood recall. Have a blessed Christmas ❤️🎄

    Sent from my iPhone

    >

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Loved reading that, Colleen.

    On Sunday, December 19, 2021, Colleen’s Creations wrote:

    > Colleen Reece Author posted: “As a child, I had five dolls, all with soft > bodies and china faces. Ruth, from Mom and Dad, had big blue eyes, and > delicate, apple-blossom cheeks. Doris, whose dark eyes and rosy cheeks > reminded me of Aunt Edith, who gave her to me. Bonnie and Bett” >

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: