Saturday, May 06, 2006

The Headless Nurse

A few months ago I glued together a couple of broken pieces on a ceramic doll that turns in a circle on a music box and returned it to Mom.
The little figure looks like a Madame Alexander doll, a childish version of a nurse in a full-skirted blue dress with a white apron.
The music box plays, "Just a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down, the medicine go down, the medicine go down; just a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down in the most delightful way."
Because Mom was a registered nurse and taught nursing at the college level, she loves listening to this little doll.
Yesterday I was singing along with the music, but I was singing "...makes the medicine go down, the medicine go down."
"I think it's helps the medicine go down,'" Mom corrected me.
"Oh! Okay," I said, and I placed the doll on the foot of her bed where she could pick it up and rewind it while sitting in her recliner during the afternoon.
Today when I came to check on Mom and help her walk back from the dining room to sit in her chair, I forgot about the doll. I eased Mom into the electric recliner and pushed the button to make it recline and lift the footrest.
But the chair jerked and there was a small noise of something breaking.
I remembered the doll, and sure enough, she had fallen to the floor and had been broken by the moving recliner. It was a clean break, though--the figure was intact except for the head having been decapitated.
She still turns in a circle and plays the music as cheerfully as ever, even without her head.
"Just a spoonful of glue helps the head to go back on, the head to go back on," she seems to be singing.
If only Mom could reclaim her lost head so easily.


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