Time seems to fly by these days! I was watching the little boys in the bath tub this morning and comparing them to this time last year. Sam and Jake are able to bathe by themselves (if the floor needs cleaned) and they help each other wash hair. Last year they needed constant supervision. I had to hold Sam down to wash his hair. Jake drank soapy bathwater whenever my back was turned. Both boys poured water by the cupfull over the side of the tub to make "waterfalls."
A year doesn't seem like a long time in relation to the rest of my life, but it's a large chunck of each child's lifetime when they're this young. I think of all the projects I'd like to do each season and how few of them we actually complete. There will be (and have been) many springs in my life. If I don't dye Easter eggs this spring- well, what's one spring out of 34? Jake- well, if we don't dye Easter eggs this spring- he probably doesn't remember dying them the year before. He only has 3 years of experiences. It's hard to keep that in perspective when I get tired and irritated. Every week of every month is important when you're young. A day still has 24 hours when you're three or four years old, but their hours and their day seem longer to them than my days and hours seem to me.
It's my job to make sure that the kids' days and hours are filled with meaningful experiences and memories. I can't give them back their childhoods once they are adults.
Sam isn't liking preschool. He has never liked preschool. I send him anyway. He's speech delayed and "needs" the speech therapy services offered by the school. Commitment and follow through are important values that I strive to teach my children. Sam has remained in a preschool he dislikes because I feel it would be "quitting" to pull him out. But- would it really be quitting? He's not thriving there, and he's not going to be four years old ever again. This is a commitment I made, not Sam. Is it fair to expect him to live with this situation 4 days a week, every week, until the end of May?
Last week I put Sam on the waiting list for speech therapy through St. Luke's/Idaho Elks. He liked the office building. He likes the receptionist. He'd like to spend less time in the echoing halls and classrooms of the very old building where he goes to preschool. I'm still ambivalent about pulling him out of school, especially when there are just a few months left. Am I letting him get away with something harmful if I let him choose to quit going to preschool? Or am I finally listening to the needs of my child and giving him more freedom to just be 4?