Friday, March 02, 2007

Competing at 2!

I can hardly believe it. My daughter is only 2 years old and she/we are already competing against other children her age. No, it's not to get into Harvard, or even a sports team, but to get into a good local school program in the Fall. I have been thinking more about this process than I have other big, important things in my life. I don't exactly know why I am so preoccupied with it, and I worry a bit about how I will feel about other really big things in her life down the road.

Tomorrow, we have my daughter's interview at one of the local schools. We really like this school, so we are preparing her as if she is taking the entrance exam to Stanford. Well, we are preparing her as much as you can prepare a 2 year old. Trying to teach her to answer "what's your name," and the rules: "remember, no pushing other kids," remember, you have to share with other kids," and "listen to the teacher" (I don't think she actually knows what a teacher is). Now, on most days, my daughter can do great in a situation like this. She is very social, loves being around other kids, and listens fairly well. Let's hope tomorrow isn't one of those rare "bad days."

We've already been scrutinized twice. Once at an orientation, and another time for the parent interview. Is it crazy that now our 2 year old has to interview? We sure are putting a lot into it. I wonder, does it really mean a great deal for her future? We've convinced ourselves of it, at least for now.

We are not alone with this process. I am hearing a lot of talk on the playground from other families who are competing for one school or another. Whether it's the great public school that takes people out of district, or one of the many private schools, people are already stressed about this for their 2 year olds. I wish someone would have told me about this earlier so I could have started preparing sooner (most programs we are looking at have a 1 year wait).

I just have to remember it is really out of my hands--meaning I make sense of these things by believing whatever is supposed to happen will happen. So, if she wasn't meant to get in, then that's the way it supposed to go. Sometimes, I hope she won't get in so I can spend another year at home with her, but that's certainly not best for my career, my family finances, and I think her well-being.

We'll see what happens....

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