Monday, 21 November 2011

I killed their imaginary friend.

No really.  I did.

I pushed her out into the path of an oncoming car.    To be honest, I pushed her out into the road and held her there until a car came along and then I said:

Look.  The car squashed her.  She's gone.

It's A, you see.  The child, not the imaginary friend, although her name begins (began?) with A too.  Alla.  L discovered them, Milly and Alla.  Sisters, I think, or sometimes possibly just friends, but either way they get brought into the conversation from time to time.  They don't particularly do naughty things, or get blamed when the children play up.  They just occasionally come and stay, or have a race, or dress up.   A and S have also become rather taken with them, so now we have several Millies and Allas. ("My Milly and Alla, not your Milly and Alla....")

So, as I say, it's A.  A is, at nearly 3, determined.  I know all nearly-three-year-olds are determined, but A, well, A is part ox, part autocratic dictator.  If she doesn't like something she'll let you know, and if she isn't sure where the boundaries are she will push, and push, and go one little step beyond.

Which is literally what she did today.  She and I had gone to get L from school (actually pre-school, but there is pride and English friends who really are at school at stake here) and were coming back across the park.  I had the pushchair, into which, apparently, Alla had been put, and A was pushing her, ziggaging across the muddy grass, bent almost double with the effort.

She got bored after a while and asked me to push while she ran ahead, through the arch and into the layby.

A! Stop!
A! Stop!
A! I said stop right there!

She was on the kerb then.  Momentarily paused.

A!  You stay there!

She looked round.  Right at me.  And she stepped out.  Both feet.  Into the road.  As she has twice before.


There was nothing coming and I was right behind her by this point, so I picked her up, heart in mouth, while she screamed and kicked, and manhandling her, L and the pushchair (and imaginary friend) crossed the road.

We turned into our lane.  It's a cul-de-sac so I normally let them run along, but I couldn't trust A not to run back into the road just to prove a point (it's been done before) so I tried to put her back in the pushchair.  She screamed.  Louder.  "Alla's in the pushchair!".

And out of nowhere I said,

No she's not.  She got out.  Look! She's run into the road.  Come back Alla!  No! She isn't coming back.  
Oh no.  A car's coming.  It's squashed her.
She's gone.

And now I honestly don't know if I've solved the running into the road problem once and for all.  Or scarred her for life.


  1. Oh my god, Allah was with you this time:-) I do not know what else to say. Just feel relieved that she is still there, the rest does not have so much importance for now. Me & The Girls

  2. It wasn't premeditated. It would never stand up in court. Not guilty.

    Has she mentioned the 'Alla incident' since it happened? Perhaps she'll know not to push mummy so far next time.

  3. I suspect Alla will make a miraculous recovery and return. She's not *your* imaginary friend, so how on earth would you know what she was doing?

  4. I'm impressed you did that - I harbour dreams that I might kill off Bigger's imaginary cow friend

  5. wow, that's pretty heavy stuff. I think Mrs T may be right but if you haven't sorted the running into the road problem, I think reins or wrist strap might be your only option. Have you seen the backpacks with a rein on them?

  6. I say A either has to promise not to run into the road (and stick to that promise), or to go to school and back in the pushchair. No compromises. No second chances. Could you make walking into a privilege (you know, for "big girls")?

    I used to have a wrist strap for my middle one, which I tied to the handle of the pushchair. I thought he'd hate it, refuse to walk, melt down, etc, but luckily for me, it coincided with an interest in Power Rangers, and in his imagination it became the wrist transporter thingy that Power Rangers wear, and he would trot along beside me happily pressing at it and making Power Rangery noises. It was just one of those lucky breaks that we occasionally (occasionally...) get as parents. Otherwise, I think I'd have just gone everywhere in the car, because he was one of those children who couldn't be trusted on a pavement.

    I'm with Mrs T. I think Alla will make a comeback.

  7. Interestingly L's Alla has made a comeback, but A hasn't mentioned her since. Nor has she run out into the road.

    I think we may be too late for reins or wriststraps- especially if S isn't having one (although that might be an incentive I suppose. Hmm.) As it so happens, with brilliant timing, they came back from nursery the next day with a book about crossing the road which the government had kindly given them, and we've read that a number of times. It seems to be going in, and we've had no repetion of the incident since but we'll see.

    Of course the fact that it's been chucking it down most of the week helps too...

    And I hadn't made the connection with "Allah" before either. I used to have a Russian friend called Alla, and I'd never thought it could be anything else. Odd how the mind works.

  8. Hmm "repetition". It's the repetition of titi that does it...


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