Few months back, I was apprehensive of sending my daughter to school. My anxiety, dilemma and indecisiveness were making me paranoid. To certain extent, still I am.
Starting the school routine to me, was like pushing her to face the world, all by herself. Failing and succeeding on daily basis. Knowing how it feels not getting the whole attention. Expressing her needs. Getting disciplined. Knowing boundaries.
Silently I vowed not to send my daughter until she turns 5. I never had much faith in our education system anyways, and that once prompted me to never send her to school, instead educating her at home in more scientific, holistic and interactive way. Academic, to me is always overrated. I never believed in marks. I had this rebellion in me who kept telling me to challenge the existing education system. Yes, the foolish me sometimes turns rebellion only to get diluted by somewhat rational me.
At times of confusion, I try to approach the problem from an outsiders point of view. I tend to cut myself away from the situation and try to see it as a person who is not a stakeholder in the entire situation. It usually helps, in putting the things back in perspective.
The outsider me calmed my protagonist self. I realized, it is not about what I feel about the entire situation, it is also how will my daughter take this.
The cartoons, other kids and story books had already started making fancy pictures in her tiny brain. She wanted to explore. She wanted to be the part of the outer world. Meet new people and make few acquaintances. She was ready in thoughts to see faces other than her mom and dad.
Moreover, the enthusiasm in her needs to be cultivated. The schools/kindergarten/activity center only can provide environment and equipments for group activities, social skills, basic mannerism, fine motor skills, communications and likewise. No matter how much I try, I can never replicate the same at home. Also, I cannot be guilty of not channelizing her energy to a creative medium.
Yes, she will have challenges. I will have fear. We will have issues. But, confining her to home will be too easy a solution.
I took her to couple of pre-schools to check her comfort level. She seemed more ready than what I was. She started taking more interest in school accessories than regular toys. “Mujhe school jana hai” became a regular chant.
I bought school bags, lunch boxes and water bottles thereby preparing myself to send her off to school. The outsider point of view kept consoling me, sending encouragements when needed. Finally, the outsider won and Mother took a step back reluctantly.
Starting 3rd January 2013, she had started going school. Dressed in pink polka-dotted tunic, angry bird school bag and Winnie-the-pooh water bottle. Class: Playgroup , Division: Kitten.