My younger daughter had a doll named Mary which became a tattered mess, but she wouldn’t let go of it – except one day when her attention was caught elsewhere
and she accidentally left it on a bench outside a store. We were only a few minutes away when she realized she didn’t have Mary with her. We hurried back to the store, but the doll was already gone. I checked with the clerks
in the store thinking someone might have found the poor thing and brought it inside, but no such luck. Stephanie was devastated and there were a lot of tears that night.
A couple of days later I went shopping and found the same exact doll (Fisher-Price). I considered telling Steph I’d found Mary and had had her mended, but that poor doll had become so messed up, I knew
Steph wouldn’t believe that. So I told her the new doll was Mary’s cousin, “Mary Sunshine”, who had come to keep her company until we found Mary. Steph looked at the new doll warily, but accepted her - making it clear, however,
it was only until we found Mary. Of course we never did find Mary, and slowly Mary Sunshine took Mary’s place. Of course by the time Stephanie had outgrown carrying Mary Sunshine around, the second Mary looked as bad as the first –
both having been hugged and loved almost to pieces.
In the picture (1979), Stephanie holds the original Mary. Coincidentally, her sister is holding a bear
- albeit slightly smaller than her Grandma Virginia’s.