In the city, one of the decisions that comes catapulting out of nowhere is preschool. It feels like this: you are sitting around with your friends, your babies babbling, learning to use their legs and turn their heads, and someone says “so did you apply to schools? And this is from your stay-at-home friends, who you’ve already curated because you want to hang out with them during the week. Sabotage.
The first time someone asked me that, at the playground, I thought they meant graduate school. For the schools my friends were looking at, they applied in December when their child was one, for the following September when their child would be two.
Of course it’s been fine. I have a little notecard with who is free on which days. So and so, Tuesday and Thursdays. So and so, Monday afternoons and Wednesdays.
The price of preschool in Boston made it easy to decide against it for us. If we’d had enough money for a two-day or three-day, three-hour program, I’m not sure what I would have decided. Occasionally I have a flutter of jealousy for that reliable break that the mom has. Or that network of parents and kids that she is automatically clued into. Or simply interacting with another adult who knows about educating children.
But one of the things I’m so grateful for now are our mornings. Mornings seem to be peak nesting time the girls. Most of the time if I try to do something with Lux, I’m interrupting her work. I interrupt her when I come to get her out of the crib. I interrupt when I declare getting dressed for the day. (compare and contrast to around 5pm that evening when it will be abject mama mama please play with me). Sprinting about in pajamas and picking out a pile of books to read. Opening the toy cabinet and turning yesterday’s dominoes into today’s tea cakes. There are new messes to be made because there is clean floor. And what’s more inspiring than a clean floor?
Moms with young kids…we’re off the grid in so many ways. We don’t seem to operate on the world’s schedule, according to any time zone. We’re up before them. We’re up when Buenos Aires is supposed to wake up. We were up before that too, when Athens woke up. Maybe one more time slipped in there, just as London started perking up.
If we were going to be trip trotting by as the rest of the world rushes to the train, I say let it be so. Let other mornings be the busy ones. Let other mornings have clocks that work properly, alarms that mean something, coats to be zipped, bags to grabbed, lists to be mulled over.