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Turning Dolls

I spent the day turning each doll, each stuffed animal, on the shelf to face the wall. There’d been too many questions lately,questions I haven’t felt capable of answering. Each time I’ve looked up, they were still there, teetering like snow upon their lips, ready to cascade down in avalanchian proportions at any moment. So I turned them around, faced them towards the wall. One by one. It amazes me how many there are in our house, taking up space, keeping us company. I considered doing a body count, but than my mind started drifting to thoughts of the holocaust and how eerily death-like they were. Dead eyes, hard lips, chests unmoving. The animals were no better. Some of them were even truly the last of their kind, or soon would be. White Rhinos. Tigers. Polar bears. Should I ever have children, would they only be tales of mythical creatures like dragons and unicorns?

I shelved those thoughts for another time and got on with my chore of carefully turning painted faces to the wall, each time trembling, hoping that the questions wouldn’t begin before I’d finished the job or worse, the comments that I couldn’t ignore, wincing whenever pearls of blood threatened to spill from perfect ruby lips.

“We’re sorry. What can we do to make it better?”

Nothing. That was the answer I dreaded giving. Nothing will make it better and how do you explain how gut wrenching I feel when I voice that fact? Guilt that I am too broken to be fixed. That, like my dolls and stuffed animals, my eyes may glitter, but they stare out into nothingness. Fear that each breath will get harder and harder to take until my chest stops moving too.

I turn the last one, her face white, her eyes dark, like the princess of the damned she is, the hint of blood smeared across her lips like lipstick and then, it’s my turn. Turning slowly, I face the wall.

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