Gavin outside of his preschool today
It's both exciting and terrifying to see how fast they've grown up. Many of them I've known since they were just a few weeks old. But while I've just been watching them grow, Gavin has been experiencing all the same milestones along with his friends.
Our school district allows anyone who will turn 5 by the end of February the following year to start kindergarten. Because Gavin' birthday is January he could have started school this week, but we made the decision early on that he would start kindergarten the September after he turned 5.
There are many reasons for this. Mostly, it's because we feel he'll be more ready - both emotionally and intellectually - next September. It also buys us time to figure out what school we're going to register him in and how on earth we're going to manage two parents working with half-day kindergarten (I'm certain that no other government policy causes working parents more stress than half-day kindergarten, but that's a rant for another day.) I am entirely confident that this decision is what will be better for him in the long-run. We're not "red-shirting" him; we're putting him when he's ready.
But it's hard to explain that to a little boy who's feeling left out because all of his friends are going to kindergarten and he's not. Dates on a calendar mean little, if anything, to him. He knows that his friends' birthdays come before his, but it's hard to understand why that should mean that they get to go to school now and he doesn't.
In the meantime, he's in a wonderful preschool program three days/week. Today was his first day with the entire class and he was so excited! We'd gone for an "introduction hour" this past Wednesday, but today he was quick to make sure that I wouldn't be staying in the classroom with him and advised me that he would be staying "for a real long time."
He also told me that the kids would all be asking him where he got his flip-flops because they're so cool (related: I did not pick out those shorts for him this morning).
I guess being anxious to grow up starts early. I'll remind him of this when he's a teenager and refusing to get out of bed.
I, on the other hand, am not quite as anxious to let him.
Maybe in another year.