I can anthropomorphize ANYTHING, just ask my kids. In my wacked out mind most things have feelings. This is especially true of old toys. I don’t have many from my childhood. My one regret being the time my mother and I mutually agreed to give away my Little People (the wooden ones) and all of their accoutrements.
I do have The Girls, Baby Tenderlove (center), Huggums (right) and Little Lisa (Left). Baby Tenderlove was my confidant when I was a toddler and preschooler. I’m told she absorbed an enormous amount of my frustrations when my parents marriage fell apart. Huggums came later and she wore real baby clothes. Clothes my mother saved from my infant years. She and I explored the neighborhood as I refined my caregiving skills during elementary school (she’s the one who taught me the importance of ALWAYS buckling the baby into a stroller!).
Little Lisa came from a high school boyfriend at the height of the Cabbage Patch Kids craze (I had a mass market CPK, but didn’t find it too hard to allow her to find another home). Little Lisa was made especially for me by David’s sister Joan whom I adored. She also wears an outfit I wore as a baby.
When I was in college, my mom, not quite ready to part with my childhood, asked Joan to restore Huggums (thankfully David and I had parted ways on good terms). I cried when I opened the box on Christmas morning. Joan did an amazing job especially considering that Huggums had um, well, let’s just say her head and her body had divorced one another. Joan managed a reconciliation and returned my pal to her glory.
By the time my daughter was born, my mother had sold my childhood home and during the move, I had rescued a naked Baby Tenderlove. Once again I enlisted Joan’s services and she did an amazing job especially given what she had to work with.
Fish never really took to the dolls, but I never really encouraged her either. At one time all of the ladies mattered very much to me, but these days, they are little more than dust collectors. Still, there is a weird connection, to throw them away seems disrespectful of all the comfort and entertainment they provided over the years. And, while letting them find a new home with another little girl (a la Toy Story 3), would be a noble thing, I can’t. I’ve read the Velveteen Rabbit. Dammit people! These girls have experienced enough. They are real!
“Save them,” my mother-in-law said. “Someday you’ll be a grandmother you know!” I used to be a keeper, but 15 years of being married to her son have broken me of that habit. *Sigh* As happy as they might make another little girl, I just can’t bear to give them away. I bought some acid free tissue paper, gave them a each a kiss and told them to take a long nap until their services would be required by a future generation.
Sleep well girls.
I know. I’m a sap.