A disabled woman is kicked out of her family home by her younger sister after the unfortunate death of her mother, and all she has to cling to is an old doll.
Nadine was seven years old when Rosa Gold and her husband Dan adopted her. The couple had always longed for children but had been unable to conceive. Rosa and Dan wanted to adopt, and they chose to adopt an older, special needs child.
Nadine was wheelchair-bound due to a problem with her spine, and thanks to the Golds, she finally found a loving family. God rewarded Rosa and Dan for their kindness because a year after they adopted Nadine, Rosa was stunned to discover that she was pregnant.
Nadine was delighted to become an older sister, and after Melanie was born, Rosa and Dan treated their two daughters exactly alike. Melanie was adorable and she grew up fast, but the older she got, the more difficult she became.
She was demanding, headstrong, and ungrateful for all the efforts Dan and Rosa made to give her everything she wanted, no matter how difficult it was to get, or how expensive.
Rosa and Dan did alright with their little gift shop in Times Square, but they weren’t wealthy, even though Melanie acted as if they were. Nadine tried to reason with her sister as she grew older, but Melanie wouldn’t listen.
One day Melanie said sharply: “Well, if they hadn’t adopted you, there’d be more for me, don’t you think?” Rosa heard her and was hurt and shocked by her younger daughter’s cold-heartedness.
Then, when Melanie was twelve, Dan passed away suddenly from a heart attack, and Rosa was left alone to run the business and raise Melanie. By then, Nadine was twenty and she immediately resolved to find a way to earn money to help her mother.
When Nadine was about ten, one of their neighbors had taught her to knit, so now she thought about how she could turn her little talent into profit. She dived into her wardrobe and pulled out a huge bag with hundreds of leftover spools of wool in many different colors.
That night, Nadine started making a colorful beanie in a child’s size, with matching mittens. By the end of the week, she had a dozen sets, and she asked her mom if she could put them in her shop.
Rosa happily displayed Nadine’s creations, and they sold like hotcakes. Nadine was delighted that she could help her mother and felt that maybe she wasn’t as helpless as she’d sometimes felt since Dan’s death.
Over the next six years, Rosa and Nadine worked hard to make sure that Melanie stayed in her private school and had everything she needed. But when Melanie was about to start college, something terrible happened.
We all have a special talent, something that makes us unique.
A desperate criminal held up Rosa’s little shop and ended up shooting her dead. Nadine was devastated, but she immediately started to think about what she could do to make sure Melanie finished her education.
Melanie, however, had no such worries. She quickly discovered that her parents had actually owned the little shop in Times Square which was worth a fortune due to its location.
A week after her mother’s death, Melanie came home with news for Nadine. “Well, you can pack your bags and rags and hit the road!” she said to her sister with a sneer.
“Go?” asked Nadine bewildered. “Where would I go? This is our home?”
“OUR home? No, no! This is MY home!” screamed Melanie. “I’ve just been to the lawyer, and it’s all mine. I’m the REAL daughter, their flesh and blood, you get nothing.”
“But Melanie,” cried Nadine, “I’m your sister!”
“Sister? You?” Melanie scoffed. “You’re nothing but a parasite, and if mom and dad were prepared to carry you for the rest of your life, I’m not!”
Devastated, Nadine started packing up her belongings, and among the bric-a-brac, in the attic, she found an old doll. “Oh!” Nadine cried. “This is the only thing I had with me when I came to this house!” She picked up the doll and held it. “Well, here we go again, out into the world…”
She packed all her things and dragged them out onto the curb. She was about to call an Uber when the next-door neighbor saw her.
“Nadine!” she cried. “Where are you going?”
“Hi, Mrs. Delancy,” Nadine said. “I’m leaving.”
“But leaving why?” asked Mrs. Delancy, noticing Nadine’s red eyes and tear-swollen face.
“The house is Melanie’s now, and she wants me gone,” Nadine explained. “She’s selling the store, and so I’ll become a burden.”
Mrs. Delancy’s eyes sparkled with anger. “So she puts you out on the street in your wheelchair without a dime to your name and nowhere to go?”
Nadine’s eyes filled with tears and she couldn’t even speak. She just nodded, and Mrs. Delancy put her arms around her. “Nadine Gold, you are going to stay with me. I’m alone now and have plenty of room.”
Nadine started making colorful knitted sweaters and hats | Source: Unsplash
“I have no money,” Nadine said. “I can’t be a burden!”
“You won’t be. You make your sweaters and your bags and your beanies and I’ll take you to the handicrafts fair every Sunday,” said Mrs. Delancy. “You’ll be a big hit!”
Nadine looked down at the old doll in her lap and smiled. “I think you bring me luck,” she said to the doll. “So you’ll be coming too!”
Nadine knitted some colorful crazy new clothes for her doll and she sat in her stall every Sunday. Her knits were a huge success, and she could hardly keep up with the demand.
One Sunday, she heard a little voice cry, “I want that doll, mommy!” It was a girl, around seven years old, dragging along a tall elegant woman.
The woman looked at the doll, then at the eye-catching riotous colors of Nadine’s knits. “You make these yourself?” she asked Nadine. “And who designs them?”
“I design them,” said Nadine. “And I knit them too.”
“I have a knitting factory,” the woman said. “I need someone with a fresh, unique vision like you!” And she offered Nadine a job as a designer on the spot. After a few years, Nadine had her own brand “Lonely Doll,” and was pretty famous.
One day she had an unexpected visitor at her lovely new penthouse — it was Melanie! “Nadine! My big sister!” she cried, running to hug Nadine in her wheelchair.
Melanie looked terrible. She was wearing dirty clothes and she was thin and hungry-looking. “What do you want, Melanie?” asked Nadine quietly.
“I saw an interview you did on TV…WOW! I was so impressed! So I thought…I have to tell my big sister how proud I am of her!” said Melanie with a smile. Her teeth looked terrible too, Nadine noticed.
“So, you want money, is that it?” asked Nadine.
“No, of course not!” said Melanie still smiling.
Melanie showed up wanting some of Nadine’s money | Source: Pexels
“You threw me out, Melanie, on the street with nothing.” said Nadine quietly, “The house and the store belonged to me too, and you cheated and stole from me.”
“Nadine…” whined Melanie. “I had bad luck…” but Nadine interrupted her.
“But you know what? You’re right about one thing — I am your big sister, and for mom and dad’s sake I’m going to help you,” Nadine said.
And she did. She found Melanie a modest apartment and a job at one of her factories and made sure she always had enough to eat. Sadly, the two sisters never really reconciled.
No matter how much Melanie protested that she loved her sister, Nadine knew that she couldn’t trust her. Nadine may have forgiven her sister’s betrayal, but she never forgot the life lesson Melanie taught her, or the pain of her betrayal.
What can we learn from this story?
We all have a special talent, something that makes us unique. Nadine turned her knitting into a million-dollar business inspired by Mrs. Delancy and her old doll.
Gratitude for kindness received is the mark of a generous heart. Even though Melanie had stolen from her and abandoned her, Nadine helped her out of love for her adoptive parents.