not quite independent imaginary friends
Posted August 8, 2012on:
These days May’s favorite activity consisted of playing make believe games with whatever animal she has on hand. She prefers animals over people. Yesterday we had lunch at Anzu, and I didn’t have anything on hand for her to do during the meal, so at one point I pointed at the pattern on the cushion mat and said they looked like sea urchins, so May ran with it and suggested the oval surrounding each sea urchin are their eggs. When she was getting up from her chair, I told her she can’t, because the eggs needed to be kept warm, so she sat back down and announced that she hatched her shortly afterward. From that point on, it was an ongoing conversation that she held with the sea urchin, introducing it to the world and the art of living. I gave her a little paper pocket (chopstick jackets) so she could put her urchin in there to carry it home. Just like in “Little Prince” May was sold on the idea and held on to her little pocket that now has the imaginary sea urchin. She has one sea urchin pet at home prior to this event, and it was a sweetgum fruit she picked up during one of her walks.
I remember seeing Katie playing this sort of game last year, but their interests and focus are different. Katie was motherly and into taking care of her creatures, calling them her babies often. May just wants to be friends and assuming minimal responsibility. Katie was interested in a 1-on-1 relationship, May assigns roles for her creatures in her imaginary society – friend, mom of someone, sister to someone, brother to someone, etc, and then when she is talking to her creature, she would bring up another “friend” and tells stories about that friend. I’m basically all of her friends, because when she’s addressing them, I’m the one answering back.
She has caught onto the no hitting rule very fast, now when she’s mad, she hits the pillows 9/10. Othertimes, she can’t find a pillow so she has to make do with other stuffs.