Monday, June 23, 2008

Moving On

I've always thought women who said they wished their little ones could "stay babies forever" were just plain loony. The baby stage was most definitely not my favorite. Why on earth would you want to put up with diapers, bottles (or worse), and no way to communicate with your child for more than the year that we already have?

Not for me. I was thrilled when my little ones started to talk and reason. I would be a nutcase if we had to stay at the baby stage any longer than we do. Of course, I didn't have those sweet little "lie on a blanket and coo" kind of babies either. Mim was pretty content, really, for the first 6 months, but Zaya was a crazy little weasel. The colic, the total inability to be still for even two seconds, the crying unless food was in the process of entering his mouth....ugh. Not again.

I can, however, see someone wishing that their little one would stay about four years old for a while. It has been a pleasant age. Zaya is almost always in a good mood (no tantrums) and he's fun to talk to. Sure, he can be a little crazy sometimes, but it's a good crazy. (see prev. post about puffer fish) He's actually reading pretty well now, so I can tell him to read his own book if he gets too insistent, but he's still young enough that he wants to snuggle and read with me also.

I've finally reached a point where I'm not eager for him to grow up "just a little more". He starts Pre-K this next year, and I'm not ready. I've been looking forward to Pre-K since he was born, but it's become less and less appealing as the time approaches and it starts to sink in that my baby will be out of my sight and control for a large chunk of his day.

This feeling and a lot of other factors led us to enroll Zaya in Pre-K at a small Christian school in W'ville. (They have the option of 1/2 day Pre-K and Kindergarten, where the local Public school here in our town only has full day in those grades.) The school is actually based in C, another nearby town, and I attended TLCS* (The Little Christian School) myself in 4th, 5th and 6th grades. They recently opened up their W'ville campus in a local church that offered their gym for classrooms and play-time. I think I'll be the first "alumni" to have their own child enter the school. (It's only 20 yrs. old. Unlike the Jr.High/High School I talk about sometimes, which is 100+ yrs. old.)

It's been a hard decision in some ways because all Zaya's (and Mim's) little buddies from church will be attending the public school here in our own town, and I don't for a moment want their mothers to think I am judging their decisions in any way. I really hope they won't be upset because I don't want to damage our friendships. Nevertheless, the choice stands. The school here in town is perfectly fine. You would be hard pressed to find a better public school, but when we sat down and listed the pros and cons for our family, TLCS won out.

Gas money is a real drawback to our decision, because it will mean one trip to town and back everyday for me, at the best. (Because Art already goes there and back everyday for work, so he can probably take Zaya in the mornings.) It has to be, though, and now we'll just wait and see how this next year goes. Who knows what the future holds. I only know that I'm going to miss my little guy a whole lot, and I sincerely hope he doesn't lose his sweet spirit as he becomes a "schoolchild". (Although everyone tells me he will.)

*It's blog name only


aftergrace said...

I disagree with "everyone" a bout Zaya losing his "sweet spirit", it doesn't always happen. It might change a little when he becomes a "school child", but you and Art done a great job raising him.
As for the people sending their kids to public school...I'm certain that they respect your choice.

Erica said...

I also disagree about Zaya changing; I think that is just silly. I know we've got a few years to go before we make the school decision, but they are only doing full-day pre-k and K around here too, and it just seems like so long to have them away from you when they are still so little.

Lilibeth said...

Well, I think you have chosen wisely. Four years old is a marvelous age and you want to savor as much of it as you can. There are many things he will learn at school; stacking the pile toward as many virtues as you can is wise; of course you know how I feel about private school after having taught in both worlds. I only wish I had been able to afford private Christian college for all of you, but I feel that your high school training helped through that difficult time as well.

Qtpies7 said...

Some kids do change, most do, but not all change for the worse. School has had its good and bad for my kids, but you just deal with it and help them learn and grow through it. Pre-K is probably not going to be the changing year.

I have never done the Christian school route. For me it is either pick the kid you love the most and send that one to the Christian school, or send none. Even with the massive discount for having several in the Christian school, it is $13,000 a year for all my kids to go. (and that is only 5 at a time, not all 7)

Home school worked out to be less expensive than public school did! Amazing how expensive it is to put them in "free" school.

JAM said...

I still think home schooling or Christian schooling, if you can is best. We did as much of each with our girls as we could.

They both had a mixture of public school, home school, and private Christian school. We put them in Christian environments absolutely as much as we could afford to, both money and time-wise.

It's not an option for everyone, and anyone who is a true friend of yours will NOT feel that you are in any way judging them for your's and their's choices on where to send your kids for school.

As to the kids growing, I just remember being overjoyed when Number Two Daughter was finally potty trained.

And you are learning, and I was much surprised by this myself, was how as a parent, I had to grow right along with the kids. As they grew through normal stages of childhood, we had to deal with changes and emotions as well, even though we were "grown up."

Zaya sure looks tall and lanky in that photo. It really shows how he's changing physically.