“I don’t care what you do with it, I just want it gone,” Alex said, pointing at the dollhouse.
This wasn’t the first time he threatened Joseph with throwing out the ancient toy. His son’s obsession with it was a constant reminder of his own traumatic childhood. Joseph sadly picked up the small house and went out to the porch, setting it on the swing beside him.
“I’ll never let you go, don’t worry, I’ll just hide you in the woodshed.” Joseph remained, swinging with the dollhouse, as if he was in a trance. Back and forth, with one hand constantly held on the toy.
He first discovered the old dollhouse in the barn, along with other treasures, broken bikes, old nursery rhyme books, and a baby’s highchair. All thrown aside to be taken to the junk pile. Being a curious, bored child, he was sorting through the items and came upon the house. Quite small, but there were a few remaining pieces inside it and the door still worked. He was instantly fascinated and dusted it off as well as he could and took it to his room.
The inside figures were intriguing and he carefully cleaned them and set them in different rooms. Every afternoon it was his first choice to play with after school and chores were finished. His father would find him playing with it for hours and began to worry. “I should have destroyed that years ago, but somehow I couldn’t”, remembering he threw it out on the junk pile, thinking it was safely away. Memories of his own fascination disturbed him and then finding his son acting in a similar manner, upset him further.
Joseph stopped swinging and picked up the dollhouse for one last session of play before hiding it it in the shed. As he covered it with an old gunny sack, he patted it softly, promising to return soon.