Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Caution: Imaginations at play!

So, Kinder Major has had a recurring case of Strep for the past month or so, which means there's been a lot of time spent hanging out and relaxing while we work through symptoms, antibiotics, and mandatory time out of school.

During this time, I've noticed a huge cognitive leap in her.  Her imagination has suddenly taken off!  Not that she didn't engage in imagination play before - she did.  It was definitely limited to tangible concepts, though.  Playing with dolls meant that they were locked into familial roles, blocks were objects she saw every day, and reading story books was less imagining what was going on with the characters in the pictures and more reciting what she remembered from when I read the story to her originally.

This past month I have seen her explore new territories like never before.  Dolls now have many different roles, from family groups to movie stars and explorers of space, sea and jungle alike.  Story books are read with elaborate tales surrounding the illustrations.  (We're working on reading and spelling.  For now, I listen as she makes up her own stories.)  Blocks and legos are used to make submarines, rocket ships, fairy houses and fantastical vehicles for monsters and pets.  Every day items are used to invent and build, often to my consternation when it involves rolls of toilet paper being unrolled, or booby traps of duct tape and paper clips.

She "writes" letters full of nonsense letters and numbers strung together, mixed in with the words she knows how to read and write. She makes cards for any and every occasion, she decorates and adorns with pleasure and an artistic freedom that every artist I know would be colored green with envy by.

Outside time is spent planting 100 foot bean stalks and mixing witch's brew out of leaves and mud.  She climbs trees and pretends they are her pirate ships and she is the captain.  When she's dirty and covered in the evidence of her play like chalk dust, she becomes a zombie or a mummy, intent on sucking out brains and tickling to death.  (Gotta love my horror baby.)

In addition to her imagination, she has an appreciation for concepts that most children at her age have yet to comprehend.  For Mother's Day, her teacher engaged the class in a project of appreciation to send home to the moms/caregivers.  Each child drew and colored a picture, and then the children sat with the teacher or one of the helpers and dictated why they love their mothers.  Kinder Major's teacher pulled me aside after school on Friday and thanked me.  My face must have been openly bemused, because she hurried to explain that Kinder Major was the only child in the class to list the reasons she loved me as something other than the things I've bought her or places I've taken her.  Instead, her reasons for loving me were the various things I've taught her and the fact that I love her "forever and ever as much as all the world."  I couldn't hide the tears that came to my eyes.

It's so awesome to me to watch her grow as a little person, to see her mind evolve with her body.  Yes, it's oftentimes bittersweet, but sweet is the key word.  She is a kind-hearted, happy child who knows that she is loved and has support in everything she wants to do.  As long as she continues to feel this way, I will be re-assured that I am doing right by her.

She's right.  I do love her, forever and ever and as much as the whole world.  She IS my world, and I'm so very lucky to be her mommy.


  1. What a wonderful post. =)
    And Strep is the worst... I hope she feels better soon!

  2. What a clever girl you have there! Thanks for stopping by my blog, I'm so glad you liked my post. FWIW, both mine are birth control babies too- and doesn't that just throw a whole spin on the PND?

  3. Ohh.. I can't wait until Asia starts doing this kind of thing!!! I want to inspire her to be creative as much as I can.

    Your daughter sounds adorable!

  4. Claire Marie: Thanks for the well wishes! I suspect she's passed it around the house at this point. Ahh well.. perhaps this is a good excuse to take a few nips of the scotch I received for my birthday... ;)

    Lori: Thank you for your thanks! It really does change things in regards to PP issues. The shock and anger at the surprise was very predominant for me.

    Bonnie: Don't wish too hard. It's beautiful, but sad to see your baby grow up. :)