Friday, December 09, 2005

Mother of a jaguar

I let my sweet little Sister have a play date with one of her favorite friends today. She's getting a sort of tight look to her face that I recognize from last year when she was super-stressed about school. Maybe it's the holidays and all her expectations. Maybe this damn diorama of Poland that she's supposed to work on a little bit everyday til next week's due date that she apparently despises doing. Maybe it's that I've tried to rush her out the door too often lately in the mornings. But--and I didnt' know this could happen--this kid seems a little stressed, so a play date was in order.

Here was the conversation with her friend as we walked home from school:

Friend: Let's pretend like we're kittens.
Sister: O.k., like jaguar kittens.
Friend: Yeah, big cat kittens. And we like to play in water (said as they splashed through gutter puddles), which is what makes us so interesting.
Sister: Yeah. But actually big cats like to play in water.
Friend: Yeah. And pretend that we don't know where our mothers are.
Sister: Yeah, and pretend that I only have 1 claw left on each of my paws.
Friend: But you usually have 4.
Sister: Yeah, but I only have 1 now.
Friend: Why?
Sister: (pause) 'Cause one time when I was a baby I had to fight a pterodactyl.
Friend: Oh.
Sister: I had to fight this pterodactyl and I kept losing the claws on my paws until there was just one left. And then I stabbed him in the neck with them.
Friend: And after that we couldn't find our mothers anywhere. We didn't know if the pterodactyl had eaten them or maybe locked them up in his cave.
Sister: Yeah. But afterwards we found some spotted furs and some bones. There were skulls and bones.
Friend: Yeah.
Sister: I took the skull and you took one of the foot bones.
Friend: Yeah, and we used them for sword-fighting.
Sister: Yeah, we used some for chewing on and some for sword-fighting.

I love these conversations, when she's playing with a friend who will go the whole "let's pretend" way with her. They check with me now and then, glancing over at me to see if I'm reacting at all to the more outrageous parts of the tale, but I never do. I just keep pushing the baby's stroller along, pretending to enjoy the sun and the breeze blowing down our street.


RGLHM said...

I loved that!! Yesterday my daughter and her friend were playing Dora and Boots and they were saving someone. The 4 year old friend had lots to tell and I loved it. Your daughter is really brilliant the way her mind works.

Nancy said...

What a great conversation!

I love listening to my daughter use her imagination like that, too. Sometimes I wish I could recapture the unfettered ability to "play" through imagination that I had as a kid.

The Daring One said...

I will be so mad if you don't show a picture of the finished diarama, especially after we all had to contribute ideas for it.

The Daring One said...

is it di-o-rama?

Sugarmama said...

Yes, di-o-rama. And if my girl ever gets it finished I will take pictures, but don't hold your breath. I'm a hands-off type when it comes to her homework assignments, unlike some of the parents in her class who appear to actually DO some of their kids' more complicated projects. Case in point: a rain forest diorama brought in by one of her 1st grade classmates last year featuring that kind of lizard that can race across water on its hind legs. The diorama was a glass fish tank with a lizard sculpture attached to a wire that you could zip along a glass puddle at the bottom of the tank. There's no way in hell that a 1st grade child could've done that, I'm sorry! So anyway, don't expect that sort of thing. So far, there's a shoe box covered in white printer paper with a Christmas tree and a Polish flag drawn in pencil on the back. We'll see...

Moonface said...

ahh... the joys of being a child and having a very active imagination! isn't it just wonderful?

Mommygoth said...

You see, this is why I keep all my notes/letters from Sister. Several of them hold similar stories, and I keep them on the fridge to remind me to keep my sense of humor. That child has always had a wild hair.