There were some strange television shows on after school in the late 70's. Bewitched, M*A*S*H, Happy Days, Laverne and Shirley, and That Girl. I never liked watching between school and dinner unless there was an Afterschool Special on because I found the shows to be boring. The humor was probably over my little-girl intellect but to this day I relate these shows to dark rainy days.
Do you know a That Girl? The one that fills your mind with unkind memories? The one Marlo Thomas played was not the kind of girl I'm talking about. She was sweet and kind but the phrase That Girl only makes me think of one thing and my That Girl was Kendra.
Early last week I attended the auction of a doll collector. I filled a mini van with dolls that I intended to resell. One of these dolls reminded me of Kendra. From the minute I saw it it filled me with a hint of resentment. I put it aside because it was an old chalk doll and I figured it was worth something, but every time I sat down at my desk I saw Kendra. The doll even had the same superior look on her face that Kendra used to flash towards me.
That Girl was cruel to me.
That Girl ridiculed me in front of others.
That Girl teased me mercilessly yet lived close enough to me to talk to on the phone without it being a toll call.
That Girl flaunted her wealth yet invited me for sleepovers.
That Girl wasn't a true friend.
Those feelings came back like a whirlwind as I looked at the doll.
I've learned that when someone comes to my mind over and over I need to stop and pray for them but this time it was much harder. I don't want to pray for Kendra. That Girl was a Mean Girl.
I got rid of the doll so I wouldn't have to remember Kendra.
I snapped her head off before throwing her in the trash.
It was oddly satisfying.
And I've spent the rest of the afternoon praying for Kendra.