We're a little behind the 8-ball. Ella turned two in June and we were not planning to enroll her in preschool until we moved to Cleveland this coming August. She would be three by that point. Here in Michigan, at least, many pre-schools begin enrolling kids at 2-1/2. Ella won't be 2-1/2 until mid-December. You can see our dilemma . . . should we go ahead an enroll her in a preschool program for just 5 months (January - May)? Should we just wait altogether, until we move to Cleveland? Should we try to find another "on my own" experience for her to begin getting used to being away from us during the day? She seemed to be ready for something but none of our options felt quite right. I feared missing her and not knowing absolutely everything about her day . . . but we kept looking, not wanting to commit to something that we both didn't feel comfortable with.
And then we toured her current school and met the women who would be her teachers and we felt right about all of it. It all finally made sense and so here we are, two parent/tot classes down over the last two weeks, and we're dropping her off for her first morning of school. Her first morning away from the both of us, spent in the company of a classroom full of other kids.
I am, all at once so happy for her, because she has been so excited about going to school since we began talking about it, and also sad that this is just the very small beginning to her life away from me. It is bittersweet. But more sweet . . .
Oh, and she picked the zebra backpack in the end. She had decided her first choice was the doggie backpack but the store we visited didn't have one. So she chose the zebra even after I told her we could order it. I think she just wanted to walk out of there with something. Now she likes to tell everyone the story of how the store didn't have a doggie backpack. She's a riot!
P.S. - Thanks to AuntieStasia for her winter hat!