|I remember it so vividly as if all of that happened yesterday.
It was the beginning of my first school year, and that meant buying new books, pencils, notebooks, and new clothes as well. I pretty much destroyed everything at my grandma's house playing with kids in my cute outfits.
A shopping day like this, not many kids looked forward to, including me. The weather was cold, cloudy, some raindrops here and there, and that's how my mood was.
Being almost seven, my favorite part of the store was the toy department. Same as for any other child that age. I didn't really have to buy anything, just looking made me happy. Living in a household where only one parent worked meant I had some limitations when it came to shopping, although, being an only child, I was a bit spoiled, too.
I ran to the toys as fast as I could, my mom hardly keeping up with me and that's when I saw it. On the top shelf, the one that almost reached the ceiling, I saw a beautiful doll that looked just like a real baby. There was probably twenty of them, looked almost the same, only this one was looking down on me with her beautiful clear blue eyes. I don't remember moving, instead I stood there as if hypnotized and looked adoringly at the doll.
My mom saw the expression on my face, but told me that we couldn't afford to buy it. It was simply expensive, she said. With sadness I took my mom's hand and walked behind her, never taking my eyes off the doll until she was out of my sight. I did not beg or scream so I could get what I wanted. I knew what it meant when you can't afford something. I understood, even at age seven. After the shopping for the boring necessities was over, we went home and I never mentioned the doll again.
Later on, whenever we'd go to the store, I'd ask my mom if I could look at the toys even though there was only one in particular that held my interest. That meant just standing there and staring at the doll with the blue eyes.
My seventh birthday was approaching and I was looking forward to it. Our neighbors came, family, friends and plenty of kids to play with. I always liked when my parents had friends over, but this was more special. It included my favorite birthday cake and presents. A short while after everyone arrived, it was time to open those presents. There was hardly ever anything that would be displeasing to me and I did like all the presents I got. There was only one missing. The present from my parents.
My dad walked into the small living room with a huge plastic wrapping bag. I looked at him first, smiling, not realizing what was in the see through bag, but when I looked I ended up staring. There was my beautiful baby with her blue eyes, in a plastic bag with a pink ribbon, looking right at me. My eyes began to water, blurring my vision. Even my throat was starting to hurt, that I couldn't even say thank you to my dad and mom who was standing right behind him. I just ran towards him, giving him the biggest hug I could muster, hiding the tears of joy in his neck.
After that, all other toys were forgotten, fot there was only one that had my full attention.
Back then, as much as I loved playing with her, I loved to smell her whenever I hugged her for she smelled like chocolate. Maybe it was only my imagination, but I liked it.
Now, eighteen years later, she doesn't smell like chocolate anymore but she's still with me and when I look at her I can see all of my past in her eyes, and I cherish every moment of it.