I remember the day I got the package from Gram. She’d mailed it just before she died.
Gram died in her sleep. There was no goodbye. Just “See you tomorrow!” as we rushed out to our car, going home. Gram waving, as she turned back to her puzzle. Everything seemed normal.
We got the call the next morning. Her neighbor got suspicious that the blinds were still down late. They did a “Wellness Check,” and did not find her well.
That day, Mom went out, I stayed home. The package came in the mail, and was addressed to me, so I opened it. Inside was a beautiful rag doll, with button eyes and a smiling face, and a letter. “Sandy, this is for you. She’ll remind you that I’ll always be with you. Gram.”
Just then, Mum drove in. I didn’t know why, but I rushed upstairs and hid it in my closet. I felt like it was a secret that Mom wouldn’t understand.
Later, I took the doll back out, and held it tightly. As my tears fell onto the doll, I heard Gram speak.
“I will always be here for you.”
“Where are you?”
“I’m in this doll.”
I jumped a mile! The doll flew across the room, right out the window! I rushed outside, but the Baker’s dog was already running off with her. I finally caught up with him at the park. But, the doll was really tattered by then and she was NOT happy with me. Anyway, that’s why I still have this ratty old doll. She’s really my best friend, my bossy, nosy best friend, Gram.
Oh, but don’t tell anybody though! It’s hard enough being in this institution without them thinking I actually talk to a doll, let alone that she talks back...