I have been hearing for years that finding a school in the city is quite a process. The time has come: that process is now ours. We are shin-deep in interviews and playdates and tours of schools for Sadie. Today Sadie had her first playdate at a school. We all agreed (meaning Jeff and I) that Jeff should be the parent to accompany Sadie to her playdates, which are basically 45 minutes of play for Sadie with other prospective students in a room with the teachers who are checking to be sure that Sadie is school-ready.
We decided to send Jeff for several reasons. First, these playdates can be something fun and special for Sadie and Jeff to do together. They will have a little routine, which may be comforting to Sadie. Second, I am honestly afraid I will go a little psycho. Not big and ugly psycho, but I am worried I will get distracted by comparing myself to other people or cry and hold on to Sadie's Crocs while she's trying to go play. I am pretty sure they don't let your kids in if you refuse to let them go for a playdate without reenacting a scene from Steele Magnolias. Third, it gives Jeff a chance to check on the school and the other parents without having his information filtered through me. I think we have a great system. I did my part and bought Sadie a cute little outfit for her playdates and talked them up to her as fun "opportunities" to play with new toys and see other children. (Subtext: and get away from your mother, who probably drives you crazy!).
I also read her some important books from the Western canon last night, such as John Stuart Mill's "On Liberty," and Hemingway's "The Sun Also Rises." She really loves Hemingway's spare style and jaded world view. I haven't mentioned to Sadie that Hemingway shot himself and was rabidly alcoholic, but she's emotionally precocious and will find out soon enough.
I may or may not have promised her an iPad if she, in turn, promised not to bite any of the other students or teachers. This next few months could prove expensive if Sadie keeps up her ends of the bargains, since we have 4 more playdates to go.
I am 99% sure that Sadie is school-ready. Me, on the other hand, may need some more maturing.