She might have been the homeliest doll ever created, but in my eyes, she was beautiful. When I was a very little girl, a doll came out that I knew I must have! Her name was “Poor Pitiful Pearl,” and the idea was that she was a pathetic little orphan doll who just needed someone to love her to make her beautiful. She even came dressed in rags, as you can see by the picture on the right. I wrote a heartfelt letter to Santa, telling him how very good I’d been and how all I ever needed to be happy in life was a Poor Pitiful Pearl doll. From what I heard later, as an adult, a lot of little girls must have had the same wish because Santa had to resort to hitting store after store on Christmas Eve and finally lucked out at the last drugstore he tried, snagging the very last one. She was the final gift I received on Christmas day and I had almost given up hope. So, when I tore the paper off the box and saw what it contained, I let out a squeal of pure delight! It was love at first sight! When I proudly showed her around at Christmas dinner at Grandma’s, my Dad and Uncle made such rude remarks about how “ugly” she was, that I broke down in tears. Peace was not restored until they both apologized not only to me, but also to “Pit.” For some odd little girl reason, I never called her Pearl, always “Pit.” It seems odd now, but it made perfect sense then.
Through the years, as life went on, toys were lost, given away, or stuffed in the attic, but never Pit. There was just something about her that wouldn’t allow such disrespect. So, through all my adult life, she has been around, sort of like a little plastic soul mate. I’ve updated her clothes a bit as you can see, including red go-go boots, compliments of my neighbor, Iris. But, at heart, she’s still the same doll.
You know, there have been too many times in my life when I feel as if I’ve been shoved in a drawer when I’ve outlasted my usefulness. Maybe this accounts for my attachment to Pit. I made a commitment to her a long time ago, and I’ve never abandoned her. There have been times when I’ve said to myself, “Here you are, a grown woman, and you still have this doll around! Honestly!” And then I answer myself (which, unfortunately, I have a tendency to do more and more these days,) “Oh, shut on up! Who am I hurting?”
We’re such a throwaway society these days. Everybody always seems to have a need to get the latest and greatest new thing on the market. Sentiment no longer seems to have a place in the world except for people like me…people who like to be reminded of simpler and happier times – times when all I needed to be happy in life was a little doll named “Poor Pitiful Pearl.”