Jul 23, 2009

the pretend parents are dead

You know how some kids will pretend to have an invisible friend? My six year old has had one of these for 3 1/2 years - the same friend. And not only has she stuck around to win an award for "longest surviving invisible friend" but we also know everything about her family.

This invisible friend, Gootka, has a little sister named Geesie, and a little brother named Austen. I really don't know how Austen ended up being the only child with a normal name. Also, her mom is from Mexico, and her dad is a blond American. And when I was on bedrest with Number Four, Gootka's mom died. And then Gootka, Geesie and Austen had to go live in China with their grandma. But not the real China, just the one that's around the corner....is what I've been told.

Once when Two Bits (my six year old) was younger, and Gootka was still new we had this conversation:

Me: What are you doing?

TB: Playing cricket.

Me: Cricket? Really?

TB: Yeah, this is the bat, and then I have to hit these sticks.

At this point in life we didn't know much about the sport of cricket (to be honest, I still don't.) In fact, I remember being appalled that she even knew it existed. So I asked her where she found out about cricket. Her reply?

"From Gootka."

I was a little creeped out thinking that perhaps she had made friends with some kind of English ghost child. But then I remembered that Gootka isn't an English name, and that Grover had talked about cricket on Sesame Street.

Although Gootka doesn't come around nearly as much as she used to, my daughter is still exercising her imagination daily.

Like today.

She was explaining the scenario to Opie so that he could play along:

"Ok, so you're a baby puppy, and I'm a girl, and our parents died and then our house burned down, so now we have live outside until the builder fixes the house. You can sleep here."

Usually imaginative play involves a baby, or a puppy, or a baby puppy. And most often than not the parents have to be dead. I don't know why. But it's always with dead parents.

A couple times I've said, "Hey guys, I'm right here! Why are your parents dead, if I'm right here?"

Two Bits usually reply is, "Our pretend parents. Sheeesh, Mom."

And then they usually run (or crawl or scamper, depending on what animal or age they are pretending to be) to go live in the woods/train/whatever. Sans parents.

I'm trying not to be offended.

On a completely different note, last night my boys would not go to sleep for TWO HOURS after I put them in bed. And they don't do "not going to bed" quietly. They do it loudly. Very VERY loudly. So finally I told them that if they didn't go to sleep I was going to come in their room and take away all of their toes.

Apparently my boys aren't too attached to their toes, because the threat didn't work at all.


annie valentine said...

For what it's worth, we were always running away.

cc said...

Funny stuff. I wish Audri would get an imaginary friend for when Madalynn goes to school...

RhondaLue said...

I'll have to try the toe threat but I doubt it'd work here either.I came THIS CLOSE (imagine me pinching my thumb and index finger VERRYYYYY closely) to bringing up the "boogie man" to my 3 and 4 yr old last night. They went to bed by 930..and were up at 1030 like they totally just napped and were ready to start the day. I was all, UH-UH!!!!!!! But they didn't seem to mind getting in trouble. THey finally went back to bed at 4 a.m. when hub got up for work. YAH...FOUR A.M. Not ok. So I am proud that I didn't scare them senseless by bringing up a childhood fear that *I* was threatened with by teenage babysitters that wanted me to go to bed. I'm a super mom.

LisAway said...

So did you follow through and take away their toes (like a good mom)?

How lovely that your kids pretend you away whenever possible. :) I think it's just a flair for the depressing since the house burned down, too and nobody wants their house to burn down.

wonder woman said...

I'd bet my toes that Two Bits always kills off the parents because EVERY DISNEY MOVIE has at least one of the parents dead/absent. The Incredibles is the only one I can think of off the top of my head where that's not true.

And my boys stay awake (LOUDLY) for hours, too. I threaten to separate them, and that works about half the time.

Alison Wonderland said...

Life is just a lot more dramatic, especially for a kid, without parents.

Yeah the toe thing... maybe not the best threat.

Emmy said...

She has quite the imagination. I always used to imagine horrible things happening to my parents but then I would usually cry about it, at least it is her other parents :)

Chief said...

I found you through Mormon Moms Who Blog. Thought I would drop in and say hello.

Cynthia said...

I found your blog via the MMB.

Hilarious! Your kids show A LOT of creativity. Sorry you have to be dead. LOL!