'All the memories of my childhood came back to me' 20 years after leaving doll to move to US, woman gets touching gift

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Laura Mejia said she "ugly-cried" when opening her husband's Christmas present: a replacement of the Cabbage Patch Kid she had to leave behind when coming to the U.S. 20 years ago. (Laura Mejia/YouTube via Storyful)

Twenty years ago, a little girl was emigrating to the U.S. on a plane and was told she could only bring one of her dolls. She had to leave Tina the Cabbage Patch Kid, one of her two favorite dolls.

"I was only allowed a little backpack. I cried about leaving her behind, and to this day I still remember her," Laura Mejia wrote about the doll on Facebook.

For Christmas this year, Mejia got reunited with Tina. Her husband, David Barragan, found one in Germany in mint condition and got it for her.

"All the memories of my childhood came back to me, and I remembered how much I loved that doll," she wrote.

Mejia, who now lives in Florida and was visiting North Carolina for Christmas, wrote that she "ugly-cried" when she opened the thoughtful gift.

Barragan said he has been looking for the doll for six years, after Mejia first mentioned it while they were dating. He advised those wishing to surprise significant others to create a running list of little details about their life that might help create moments like these.

"The more details the better, because when it comes time to put together a meaningful gift, the details become monumental. From now on, ask your girl more personal questions and pay attention to the little things," he wrote.

Mejia, who came from Colombia, said that now she understands why she had to leave the doll behind.

"I left her behind because my parents wanted to give me more opportunities and a better future," she wrote. "I thank them every day for all that I have."
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