For many years I was impressed I would do a doll of Anne Frank. I knew it would be a difficult doll to do. I knew that to do it with integrity, I would have to search the deepest parts of my soul. It would require a great deal of sacrifice and faith to accomplish what I envisioned. I felt a great deal of responsibility rested on my shoulders to represent her correctly. I have to admit I was intimidated to the point that even though I felt strongly compelled to do her ... I wondered if I could reach my own expectation. I kept finding excuses not to start sculpting her.
Then I lost my oldest son in an accident. Being able to handle a subject like Anne Frank became one of the blessings from the loss of my son. I am older and wiser. I now have a deeper connection to many things that I only knew on a surface level before. It was only after this trial that I felt capable of personally going where I needed to go emotionally to do the doll of Anne. Though I was in a better place to handle such a difficult subject, I still found it took a lot of courage to start sculpting Anne. I listened to her diary on tape while I sculpted part of the time. I read books and prayed. Somehow I knew I needed to make her hopeful, and soft, and human.
I had two very special spiritual experiences while I sculpted her - times and feelings that I will never forget. I know that she knew what I was doing and that she approved. I know that her spirit was close. I know that these dolls are done for far more than the 35 people who will own them. I feel very privileged to have been used as an instrument for the Lord's greater good and design. It has been a humbling experience.
I tried very hard to make Anne special in every way - even in the clothes she wears. She wears a handmade knitted sweater of fine Persian wool that is knitted on tiny lace making needles. It even has little buttonholes and tiny handmade buttons. She has human hair. And her shoes are custom made of very thin leather.
I hope that you are able to feel a little of this as you look at Anne. It is her humanness that has keeps her alive in our hearts. It is her belief in the good in all of us that I honor in doing her. Her words help teach us that no matter what we believe, or where we live, we need to care for each other here on earth. By simply reading her story, we learn a great deal about humankind, and ourselves.
Doing the doll of Anne Frank has been a great blessing in my life. I hope she touches your heart as much as the things she has to teach touched mine. I'm glad I had the courage to attempt such a difficult subject. I believe we can not afford to forget historical atrocities of the past. Though I am not Jewish, I have a deep empathy for all peoples who have suffered because of the intolerance of others. It is a fact that the teacher usually learns the most. I was honored to learn the lessons Anne has to teach. To honor what I learned, 10% of the sale goes to a charity to help teach world tolerance.