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a case of unrequited love--a long story

Posted Aug 23 2009 10:23pm

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Funny that you asked about this dolly. She's just "my baby." Different names have been tried, but none seem to stick more than five minutes.

It's a funny story about this girl and this doll. Well, actually the funny story is about me and my feelings for this doll. Miel has been in love with her ever since her beloved friend Annika gave here to her on Christmas. She's the perfect size for tucking under her arm and traveling everywhere. Or putting in her brand new backpack carrier, scored a garage sale and used by two generations of neighbors.

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Enter crafty mama. I love that this baby was Annika's and that Miel loves her so much, but of course I have my own visions of what is perfect for these children. So I ordered a kit from Dancing Rain Dolls and went through a great labor of love with my friend Alissa learn all the steps necessary to make our very own natural wool and cotton waldorf doll.

The kit from Dancing Rain was great by the way, and all our communications easy, even if our order was a bit complicated. The kit arrived like a gift, with the components--wool for stuffing, cotton tricot for cutting and sewing, special needles, bits of embroidery thread, mohair and wool yarn for hair, even a beeswax crayon for blushing her cheeks--wrapped festively in colored tissue paper. That made the 40-something page pattern a bit less daunting.

Working in Alissa's lovely art studio late into the evenings was a delightful way to share late-night crafting camaraderie!

So anyway, what I'm trying to say is that I worked hard. I stretched my skills. I gave my heart. Our doll isn't perfect, but she's sweet and filled with love.

And...while I was working away on her, Miel's beloved baby doll was stranded in San Francisco. So Miel was deeply invested in the progress of her new dolly, and in the way of 3-year-olds, had forgotten about her old baby.

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She even started sleeping with her before she had hair. Maybe even before she had arms.

The day came when dolly was finished. Hair, lips, eyes, even the rouge on her cheeks. Do you know that feeling of making something for your child that she loves so much? Nothing better.

That same day a box comes in the mail. I was so excited to open it because along with some groovy hand-me-downs was a new dance CD made for me by none other than CBH, our very own Ludichris. So without thinking I brought the box inside and Miel and I opened it.

"My baby!" she cried. And her new doll has not been looked at since. Except to say, "I don't like that doll. I only want my baby."

I confess, I tried to talk her out of it. I tried to show her why her new doll is so much better---"made special for you by mama..." No dice, of course.

Then I found myself really angry with the baby doll. I had the urge to throw her, hide her, stuff her in the trash. There you have it. What a mirror. Yelling at my dog or kids is absurd, too, but I can at least suffer the illusion that they did something wrong. Did something to me. Did something to make me unhappy. But baby dolly...same as she ever was.

So now here we are, all learning to peacefully coexist. Miel and I both striving to accept the same thing...we can have two dolls and they'll both get all the love they need. For now I'm fostering my creation. And maybe I'll recover my motivation enough to learn how to make buttonholes to sew her new jumper. 'Till then, she's cozy and ready for the coming autumn in this lovely set made by our dear friend Gayle and her helpers over at Tara Handknits...too bad the rabbit they came with is naked now. 

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