This is Sarah.
She’s 41 years old now, and holding up to the years much better than I am!
On my twelfth birthday, (back in the days when a 12 year old was still just a little girl) I received, from my dear Auntie Pat, this beautiful, hand-made soft doll. Immaculately crafted and made with all the love I always felt from Auntie Pat, Sarah has a sweet, gentle face and layers of clothes, frilly petticoat, dress, apron, hat. An old-fashioned gal, for sure! Of course, she came along with me when I came to the USA, and sits by my bed, always. She has been there through a complicated adolescence, two failed marriages, four pregnancies, and decades of desperately hopeful parenting. She even submitted to my nappy/diaper practice runs when I was pregnant with my first, and she is filled to the brim with a lifetime of my whispered thoughts, and she is plump with my secrets! For thousands of nights, I’ve dozed off with Sarah’s calm face close by, watching over the good and the bad, reminding me of Mum and Auntie Pat, family ties, a beautiful garden in Salisbury, walking on stilts, adventures, love. Funny what a bunch of fabric and buttons and ric rac can bring to mind. I often run my hand over her, smooth out her dress, adjust her little shoes, and I am always transported. Back, back, back to old, easy, perfect days. She always brings a smile.
And after all of these years, I’m finally making my own version. Not a replica of my Sarah, but she will obviously be related! She will have the same calm and gentle and beautiful face, with the expression that calms and soothes. We will not have all the layers of clothes though. She’s a more modern girl – like me!
My girls will think I’m a crazy lady some day in the future when I present their 20something selves with dolls! Haha! But when they’re 50, maybe they will feel more than a bunch of fabric and buttons and ric rac as they lay a hand on their doll friend. They will feel nostalgia and they will feel all my love surrounding them, always. But first – a prototype!
And here she is!
This is the first attempt! As always, when I try to emulate something, I go about it the hard way! So she’s a little rough around some of her edges, and I’ve learned some lessons about construction, etc, as I’ve gone along. But I love her so much anyway, and I feel absolutely delighted whenever I look at her! She has got Sarah’s face – sweet and gentle, and she has a modern edge to her, with wild, highlighted hair and an updated wardrobe! I’ll find someone who will ignore wonky stitches and weird construction issues; someone who just needs a little friend to hang out with them forever – that’s if I can bear to part with her!
The second attempt is gonna be much quicker and much better! And you know that by the 15th doll, she’s gonna be perfect enough for me to give them to my girls! Hope they’re not already 50 by the time I get to it! Haha!
Well! That’s what I’ve done with my week!! How ‘bout you??