We found the perfect preschool for us. Actually, I found it online six months ago as we moved the first time, but I’ve been busy going in and out of escrow four times and to a conference and on holiday vacations and through a prolongued lawsuit, so aside from listing the top ten preschools I wanted and making a table of when tours and open houses and applications and fees are due, I haven’t made much progress. Applications for all the local preschools were due several months ago. It’s like grad school all over again…you apply a year early and then sit in limbo for months. I thought the Pope eliminated limbo, in yet another, “sure the Pope is infallible, but now I’m Pope and my infallibility trumps the dead guy’s infallibility. No really, I’m sure this time; don’t question me. No, I’m not going to change the Bible, too, because it’s been changed millions of times by people a lot less infallible than me, but it’s really done this time. It’s the final draft, because the word of God can be changed until people start noticing, then it’s final. The Book of Mary? Never heard of it.”
Small problem, y’all. I need preschool, like, now.
So we’ve toured several preschools. Peanut and I have the same opinion of all of them, and loved, loved, loved the school we saw this week—the school whose online program description made me cry because I finally felt safe letting a preschool community help care for my kid. (Yes, I am overly involved in my child’s development and life. It’s a little thing called mothering. Look into it.)
(Sorry. That was snarky. I just don’t like the collectively raised eyebrows I just heard as I admitted that a preschool philosophy made me cry…I feel like jumping on my desk [who am I Tom Cruise?] and hollering “you don’t know me. You don’t know my life. Don’t judge me!”)
You can see how easily I’ll fit in with the laid-back earthy co-op preschool we’ve chosen, btw.
Being at the school made us happy. Leaving the school we were happy. I had more patience than I’ve had in months, a new perspective that, unlike other schools, made me confident in my parenting style and confident that a community of likeminded parents will help me be better every day. I even set up stations in our living room, dining room, and kitchen last night, inspired by the way Peanut played so intently and earnestly at the school This morning has been a dream of cooperation and constructive interaction and structured but uncoercive play.
Anyway, we have two problems. The first is that the waiting list is at least 40 families, for the fall semester. I was hoping for the “how does next week sound” semester. But it’s my fault we’re way behind. We knew last year we were moving, and to which approximate area. I could have done all the work and had him in now. But seriously, it’s preschool. I have books to finish and an academic career to reinvent and a corporate career to beat off with a stick and a family to foster, here, and I…ah, what the hell. Admit it. I’m lazy. I’d rather blog than call for preschool tours. Sue me. I need a local dentist, too, and that’s even further down the list. Right next to “edit all the video we’ve shot of Peanut in the past three years”.
Second issue, other than the serious uptick in my caffeine consumption today, is that there is a much, much, much shorter waiting list for the afternoon program. So if I want school asap, I have to begin a bootcamp of earlier naptimes, or let Captain Caveman skip nap three times a week (and inflict the resulting frustrated, emotional, out-of-control lump that is a napless three-year-old on the other kids after lunchtime) to get into the afternoon program. He’s already said he needs naps and doesn’t want school in the afternoon. He said this today after refusing nap for more than an hour as he rammed cars and trucks into each other on the floor for quiet time.
So wait or cram my kid into a schedule that will fit my need for free time? I should get a sitter a few times a week until we get into the school. But that would involve research, and unless you can find it in a Melvyl search of Berkeley’s Doe library, I just can’t be bothered. (That’s right, even Moffett is too much to ask. Bancroft I’d consider.)