Wednesday, December 29, 2010

a sister for Bitty Baby

Kid 4 got an American girl for Christmas this year… actually she got 2. She got another baby doll and a historic doll. I was telling a friend of mine about them today and she said “I get it, a doll’s a doll… right?” and I emphatically said “NO!”

American girl dolls ARE different. They are different for so many reasons and I’m not sure I can put it into words. I fell in love with Bitty Baby by the American girl doll company many many years when kid2’s best friend Olivia put her into my arms. She wanted me to hold her baby, to cuddle her near me… this little doll felt different to me, special. I will never forget the moment that Olivia put her in my arms because years later when Olivia was struggling I knew she was clinging tight to that doll, I knew that her little dolly was keeping her safe. These dolls are not only exclusive, well made and last forever they are a friend to many, comforting to countless and the holder of loads of memories.

For many years we lost Olivia and I thought about her doll and how she how she dressed her up and pushed her in a stroller, how she hugged and kissed her, and how she so carefully placed her in my arms that day. One day we received a catalog in the mail from American Girl Doll company and as I flipped through the pages of that magazine, my eyes filled with tears because there she was- a replica of Olivia’s doll. I looked at that magazine over and over wondering if ordering it for Kid2 would only remind her of losing her Olivia…?

Many years later I was blessed with another little girl, we wanted to name our Kid4 Olivia after our beloved girl but we knew it would be too hard to say her name every day while not having her… then miraculously one day Olivia came back to us. One day she was in our lives again and we felt overwhelmed as she handed her doll, her beloved American Girl doll, the very one I had held all those years earlier to Kid2. Kid2 stood in silence, she knew what this gift meant, and she knew this meant that she would never lose Olivia again. She clung to that doll as we left Olivia that day. Her American girl doll, the one that Olivia gave her sits in a basket day after day watching over her. It’s more than a doll, it’s a friend to her, that beloved baby doll got her best friend through hard times, it’s more than a toy, it’s a connection, it’s a heart string bonding one friend to another…

When Kid4 was three years old I ordered her a bitty baby, a friend, a companion to be by her side and she has loved her bitty baby every day. Bitty baby travels with us, she joins us for family events. She is well loved, held at night in the dark and the holder of tears when necessary. This amazingly well made doll is more than a simple plaything, she is the holder of my girls’ heart and I love her too.

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