When I was little, I had dolls and dollhouses. The little dolls had little houses, and the big dolls had big houses. Very often, the little dolls would go to visit the big dolls because their houses were so much bigger, although the big dolls couldn’t comfortably visit the little dolls because there just wasn’t enough room to fit in their houses. These were serious playtimes, with entire lives being invented and reinvented on a daily basis. The dolls had lives, families, parties, memories--you name it. In my mind, the dolls’ world was very rich.
Then came the day I sat back and wondered about my own role in the lives of the dolls. Was I a deity? After all, I created their scenarios, rewarded them for good behavior, and dropped them on their heads for bad behavior. All situations were thought of in advance by me. Sometimes I’d have the dolls play the scene out to one end, and then start over and have them play the scene out to another completely different end. Each time, I controlled everything, except for when they occasionally got sassy and used swear words. In any event, my head began to swell when I realized my omnipotence.
|Her beautiful night light.|
Until another day came when I sat back and wondered about my own world. I began to wonder if I were just a doll in a very large dollhouse with lots of other dolls around me. Were we all just playing a doll game together? Was our giant dollhouse inside of a giant doll world that was inside of a giant toy box? Perhaps we all just thought our world was real because we didn’t know any better. But maybe we were just dolls and all our hopes and dreams and plans and schemes were just roles we were playing out without a choice.
Of course, those thoughts ultimately led me to wonder that if I were a doll, to whom did I belong? Was there a giant child somewhere inventing scenes for me and controlling my whole life? Maybe everything in my world just seemed real because I wasn’t the one making it up. It certainly made me behave a little nicer toward my own dolls in the hope that whomever I belonged to would see how good I was and be nice to me as well. I knew she’d never visit, though, because my dollhouse was entirely too small for her to get into.
I’m still not sure about it all. Tonight a giant night light slips beneath the horizon, beautifully coloring the world in which I live in shades of pink and orange. Clouds like fluffy wisps of cotton candy float by in the sky. The dollmaster’s eyes grow heavier and she fades off to sleep, and then the sky goes dark and I go to sleep as well. Good night. Sleep tight. Let’s play again in the morning.