Just like that, my baby is growing up. A few weeks ago she had a dental check-up (No cavities- Yay!). We had her kindergarten physical today (she's growing well and is overall pretty healthy). I filled out a pile of forms and turned everything in today. She's officially on the list for kindergarten for the school down the street.
Sure, she's been in preschool for the past two years, but that doesn't really count as "real school" to me. Preschool has been great, but it's been a very sheltered environment where she pretty much goes to play for a few hours three days a week. After agonizing over where to send her, we decided kindergarten is going to be in our local, public school. And it's going to be all day long. That's the part I don't like.
Where we live, there are no half-day options. Every kindergarten is all day long. I guess I should clarify what I mean by all day long. The students start school at 8:15 and the kindergarten is out at 1:15. The rest of the school gets out at 2:45. So while it's not exactly all day, it is including lunch time. To me, that's a really long time. This Mommy is not happy. My little baby is not going to be able to eat lunch with me every day. Instead, she'll be exposed to who knows what from her peers at school.
I've worked public schools. I know that there are not so good things that kids talk about and introduce other kids to. I was rather hoping to keep my daughter in a nice little bubble for as long as possible. I know it's not feasible, but as a parent I think it's important to determine when they can be introduced to certain topics. Now I'm going to pray about what to say and prepare myself for her to come home and ask random questions.
On the other hand, she will be able to make new, local friends. Our current preschool is in the next town, so planning any playdates is a bigger ordeal than just bringing her somewhere in the neighborhood. Plus, when she makes new friends, I get to make new friends. I'm one of those moms who wants to know the families of who my children hang out with.
I also plan to volunteer in her kindergarten classroom as often as I can. I hope to set up a regular schedule and coordinate with maybe another mom to watch my children once a week or so. I'm excited to be involved and let another teacher be in charge.
It should be a great experience, but I still can't believe it's here already. Well, technically I have through the summer and until August before she actually starts, but it's getting closer. Until then, I'll be treasuring our lunches together.