I don’t know how old I was, but one of the earliest memories I have is of waiting in the living room in Wichita with my brothers and sisters on a Christmas Eve when our parents were in the basement wrapping presents. There were no new toys that year, only hand-me-downs from some kind soul, and this baby doll is what I received. So I don’t know how old she is; she could be 75 or 80 years old, for all I know. She has a cloth body with composition head, arms, and legs. Her head turns, and her brown eyes open and shut. My mother made the dress and a pair of underpants for her.
When I lived in Florida in the late 70s, I kept her in a closet. Waterbugs were so bad that when I was cleaning out the closet, I found they had nibbled on her fingers and toes, and also on her face. I was devastated and set her out on the trashcan which sat under a wide overhang of the roof and left her there for quite some time; I don’t remember how long. But I couldn’t bring myself to throw her away.
Restoring My Doll
Then one day it occurred to me that I could repair her with plastic wood. So I rebuilt her fingers and toes and filled in the holes on her face. I sanded her smooth and mixed up some enamel paint and made my doll look like new.
I’m like this doll. God found me on the trash heap and brought me into His house, out of the weather, and has been working on me for some time now. I can’t wait to see how I look when He’s finished. He’s got a long way to go yet, but He’s not giving up.
Sylvia Sioux Stark writes from Tennessee.