I saw a broken doll a while back in an alley outside my father’s store. I must have been about 11 years old. It was in an alley of filth where everyone slung their garbage.
This doll had an old fashioned face made of porcelain. It would be valuable today. As I looked at her, I wondered what she had done to be laying about in an alley with all the other garbage that people discarded without a second thought.
Her dress was torn and filthy. It was barely on her. Her body was rigid while her arms and legs hung loosely. Her face must have been pretty at one time, but now looked like something out of a horror movie. Her one eye still moved when I moved her even though it moved hesitantly as though afraid what would happen if she looked directly upon the person holding her.
I wondered if she had been loved. She must have at one time, I decided. Her hair was so tangled it didn’t feel like hair, not even the fake hair on dolls. Did someone lovingly brush her hair in the past? Was she a gift for another little girl now a woman? Was it the woman who had thrown the doll out or was it a child of the woman?
I felt sad for the doll. I decided that I would take her back to the store with me. I could sneak her in, I thought. I was caught bringing her and had to throw the doll out again. She was too dirty to bring into the store that my father owned and operated.
Flash forward to today!
I feel like that broken dolly at times. I don’t mean in the psychological sense because as always, I work very hard at keeping that part of me as intact as I possibly can. However, the body is a different matter, that which we have little control over. This is what is so frustrating about Multiple Sclerosis. We don’t know what part of our body will be selected to produce mayhem from. We also don’t know when it will hit or how severe it will be, at least those of us with remitting/relapsing MS.
We can’t make plans far in advance. Our lives are planned tenuously, perhaps we can make it, to this or that.
I think back to that little dolly in the alley. I was prepared to fix her up and love her, but being a child, the decision was made for me to throw her in the garbage again.
I wish I could throw MS in the garbage and breathe life back into that broken dolly. What I can do, however; is share my stories and read other’s stories. We learn from each other and the support is out there if you can reach out for it.
I want you all to know that I’m here, should you need me. I have two shoulders to lean on, nice open ears to listen, eyes to see, mouth to speak, hands to type. It matters not that they may not work in perfect harmony like they once did when I was a brand new dolly, but the parts are still here and they work.