Monday, May 28, 2007

Flipping a Coin

You know all those times when you're presented in life two paths: A hard one and an easier one? And both could make you happy? I've done my share of choosing between the two -- and have to say that I split the choices fairly evenly.

Easy choices? Staying with The Prince and turning down big job offers in cities far away when we were dating. (Worked out? Yes with The Prince, career took a hit.)

Hard choices? Moving back to New York from London after finally settling in, and wanting to really make a go of it in Europe. (Worked out? Career took off, had The Rabbit, endured many tough spots....)

To me it seems like a question of choices that generate comfort, and choices that build character. And I want both.

So here I am with The Rabbit's choices in my hand. Which is almost worse because who is to say I should be entrusted with choices for another person? The easy choice? Keep her at a school where she knows tons of kids, where she can sleep in later and walk there from home, where she's already comfortable. Or the hard choice? Move her to a school where she'll have to be driven or take the subway, where she knows one kid (I think....), where she has to start all over and watch her friends go to school together, without her. But she has a shot, I really believe, at a better education in the long run.

So here I am.

Fairy godmother? You out there?


Sugarmama said...

Alright, I've got to chime in here, though so far it's been so hard to think of anything to say to help out with all you've been going through. But you've solicited opinions so I'll offer one. A kind of long one.

I've got a daughter in third grade, and in her four years in school I've learned (all over again) that there are great teachers, okay teachers, and teachers that maybe don't suck but really aren't compatible with my particular kid. At all. I believe that this would be the case no matter what school I send her to and so she continues at her current school and I hope for the best. I also communicate with her teachers frequently and am active at her school, but sometimes she's really lucky with the perfect teacher and sometimes not. (I have to admit that one of them was absolutely terrible for her.)

Imagining myself in the same situation you're in, I'd still lean toward keeping my child in the school where she already knows lots of kids, where she can walk to school and have the whole neighborhood-going-to-school experience, and where she's feeling comfortable and confident.

I don't know about you, but I don't remember a damn thing about my kindergarten, 1st, or even 2nd grade teachers. I remember my 3rd grade teacher was beautiful and tried to get me to read black authors. I remember my 4th grade teacher was kind and old. Then it gets a bit more detailed and I remember actual classroom subjects. I guess I'm just saying perhaps it doesn't matter so much quite yet. That maybe getting her confident and used to being in school at all is the main thing to worry about now.

Since you asked...

Manhattan Mama said...

You know, sugarmama, I partially agree with you. But I also know that some of he kids are splintering off this year.

And to make matters worse, some of the kids are being put in these "gifted" classes (I know, I know) where The Rabbit is wait listed. So basically there are smart kids/ and not as smart kids. And the school treats them this way.

I guess I don't want The Rabbit to grow up thinking she's not as smart as her friends. Because, and I say this as delicately as possible, that's just ass.

So she'll go to a new school, where actually she may know 2-3 kids as it is turning out, and still hang with her other friends after school and on the weekends, and where I won't expect perfection, but I also won't expect that she'll leave when she's 10, that she's not as smart as her buddies.