Friday, February 1, 2008


That's my one-word explanation for why I've neglected my blog. Preschools. It seems like every waking moment of my life had been devoted to researching, calling, visiting, or pondering M's preschool possibilities. And I wasn't even going to send him to preschool next year until I realized that it might be good for him to have a little more time away from me. So the quest began, rampant and unrelenting and unsatisfying too, since nothing was good enough. And then...

I was watching M this morning at his final soccer class. Yes, they have soccer for two-year-olds. Yes, it's a bit like herding ducks. Still, they have fun, and it's a different gross motor activity for us. At the end of his class, the coach asked all the kids to sit down with their hands on their heads. A few minutes passed (envision ducks again) and I noticed that only M was doing as asked. Then the coach asked them to come up one at a time, M first. He came up, sat, and put his hands on his head. The rest of the kids jumped up too, even though they were still supposed to wait. We got it all sorted out--meaning M stood up and the rest sat down--and he stood there politely receiving his medal, stamp, and high-five. Then he bowed out of the way for the rest of the ducks--er, kids.

So what this have to do with preschools? Well, as I watched him, I realized that he had grown into a little boy without my even realizing it. He could follow instructions--someone else's instructions--and behave well with others. Really, he was doing fantastic for an age so similar to Cheerio-eating, wing-flapping, head-dunking waterfowl (this is my way of being cute with my duck analogy, but I guess when you feel you must start explaining it, the analogy has flown south). How did this happen? How could I possibly find a school that continues him on this path of inadvertant success? How did all this happen without such a school?

Then it dawned on me: he is in such a school. He gets constant, individualized attention. His skills are met regularly with difficulty to match and push their growth. He gets love, encouragement, and education from a person he trusts to lead him in these areas: me! I am doing something right after all!

I know--what does this have to do with preschools??? Okay, I have spent so much time trying to find that preschool, one just like the one I now realize he's already been since he was born. But maybe that's not the point. After all, wouldn't I just keep him here if that was what I was really looking for? So maybe what M needs now is something slightly imperfect. It's not that I don't want him in the best preschool I can find, because I do, but there won't be any perfect preschool. And that's okay. It might be good for him to not have constant, individualized attention. It might be good for him to have to find his own way instead. It might be good for him to learn that he can trust himself in the same way that he trusts me. It won't be perfect, but thank goodness that we don't always need perfection.

1 comment:

Melissa said...

Flown south! Ha!

[insert insightful comment here]