Tuesday, June 8, 2010
It is kinda funny what dollies like this do to little old ladies. Here is Virginia's story:
I saw this doll and thought it was kinda cute so I was thinking about buying it for my collection of little toys when this little old lady approached me to tell me how cute she thought this particular doll was. She was looking at it so intently, I thought maybe she had wished she had seen it first.
She oohed and awed over it a bit, telling me how she sometimes buys dolls for her grandkids at this store, and by this time I was almost certain that she really wanted this doll, way-more than I did. I asked her if she wanted to buy it. She declined. With that taken care of we changed the subject to kids. She had six of them, all grown now, and didn't make a practice of "bothering" them for much, except that she had gotten a ride to the store we were at from her son.
I made it a point to offer her the doll again, wanting to make sure she didn't want it still, and she declined again...but made note to tell me again how much she liked it. With that, we parted ways in the store.
It was a small store and in a few minutes later we met up again. Maybe to her, it was just another chance to chat, but then again, maybe she really wanted the little doll... I was not sure, but I was surprised when she asked me if she could look at it once more. (Apparently, she, like me, thought the doll was quite cute. )
The experience was a little bit like being at the grocery store, with a real baby in a shopping cart , you know, people just want to say something about how cute the baby is.... only this was just a doll. Then she asked me about my arm, why was I wearing "that thing"....
I told her I had had breast cancer. I told her I wear the sleeve to help control something called lymphadema, where my arm gets swollen. Then changing the subject, I asked her if she lived nearby.
She said yes, but she lived alone since her husband had died not long ago from cancer. She said, he didn't want to do any cancer treatments...he thought he was "too old" and so he just coped with things until he died. She said she would lay awake at night talking to him telling him how she didn't want him to go and leave her behind.
Then she told me about her faraway friend who's husband recently had died and how hard it was for her. Said there was a lot of bills left behind for her to pay. the man just up and died one day. Never sick... just one day he was alive and the next he was gone; he died sleeping in his chair.
Death is one thing, but sudden death...
Funny, the people left behind in such an instance are often baffled. Such an incident leaves a very big void in the lives of those who kinda expected them to be around the next day. Death is weird... life is weird too, but death, after life, if you ask me, is weirder. I had had a week of it myself... "death," that is..... First, the tomato plants... the squash, eggplant, and zucchini too, they were all dead because of the cold.
Then there was my faithful dog, Buddy. No, he didn't die, but it was a near death experience. The old farm dog was almost run over by the car, I thought for sure he had been a gonner. I expected that I would open my door, on the passenger side, and find him squished. The ordeal sent him reeling with yelps of pain and anguish, but he quickly regained his composure, and after a little while he was up walking around... though just as dazed as usual. Since then he has definitely been affected....but still happy and eating and drinking.. Recuperating... fazed...but still a little bit like the Ever-ready rabbit, or maybe a TImex watch... still being buddy... sleeping and having difficulty getting up and down. That old dog just "keeps going and going."
Then there was a broken finch egg, fallen from a nest. The tiny bird housed inside was exposed and ...you guessed it, "dead". There was still more in the nest, but it was sad trying to figure out how to dispose of an unhatched chick
Then too this week came the death of a family friend, a lovely lady.... swallowed up in that dreadful thing called death, and now here I was in this timely conversation with a total stranger, a short, white-haired little old lady, probably in her eighties, talking about the death of her husband and friend.
It was a death week for sure. What a blessing that such a thing is not in-your-face all the time.
We talked a bout the hardships of getting old, cancer, and being a burden on your kids....and sdolls. Because of a little doll, this woman was becoming my friend. We were like two little girls in a doll shop, only we weren't so little... just girls... women... ladies, passing like two clouds on a blue sky day.
Wanting to console her just a bit in her situation, and offer her some hope in her loneliness and soon to be expected future of death...I said, "Well, you know, the Christian hope, the hope we have in Jesus Christ, and the hope of a resurrection and eternal life, is a pretty awesome hope."
She said, "yes..." like she understood, but drove the conversation elsewhere, continuing to tell me about her friend in California and how she didn't know where all the money that her deceased (aka dead) husband, had spent.... leaving them with no funds and bills to be paid. IT was another hopeless situation.... but her friend was talking to lawyers trying to figure things out.
I heard a lot of information.... then the woman said, "I don't know why, " she said, "but I just think that is such a pretty little doll."
"Would you like to buy it?" I asked, knowing that this would be the third time, and maybe she would say yes.
"No." she said, "I have already bought enough dolls here. You buy it, for your kids."
"I really do not need the doll. They have a lot of toys, I just thought she was cute." I said. I really didn't know if I wanted to buy it or not when I picked it up and carried it around the store, I really was was still deciding. It didn't matter all too much to me, so I asked again, "Are you sure you do not want to buy it?"
"She is really cute... just precious, a very nice doll," the woman said. "You buy it, you could even make clothes for her."
We discussed the clothes a bit and seeing she didn't want to buy it, or at least had been offered it several times in case she really did, I said, "Well, I guess I will buy the doll then." The woman seemed content, our need for conversation, coming to a close. I found myself wanting to pray for her, now that I was loaded with all the inside information.... and so, I asked the woman her name.
"Virginia." she said.
"Well," I said, "I will ust simply have to name her Virginia."
They both did.