Raising Myself

Yesterday after his theoretical nap time, I went in to see Island Boy's room destroyed, yet again. I asked him to pick up the clothes he had strewn about the room, and he obliged. Sort of. He picked up the first two or three items and put them in the dirty laundry pile. Then, he grabbed the rest of the clothes and, as I was standing right there, tried to shove them under his bed. I thought to myself, "Huh....I guess you really are my kid!" And then I made him pick them up and put them where they really belonged.

As Island Boy's personality is starting to show through more, I am starting to see more and more of myself in him (beyond just his desire to skip over cleaning tasks and simply "hide" things out of sight). I was horribly shy as a child (ok, I still am pretty painfully shy, I just hide it somewhat slightly better now). I also have always struggled with self-confidence issues. Not self-worth, mind you (not usually), but more doubting my own ability to do things. Though I still struggle with it, that one has improved somewhat as I've grown and matured. I mostly feel it come back up when it gets paired with the shyness. It's really, really not fun, and sure not something I had ever hoped one of my children would get.

Don't get me wrong, you can find plenty of Island Dad in him, as well. But I worry about Island Boy having to go through feeling the same things I felt as a kid. I want better for him (not that my own parents didn't do  a fantastic job, because they did. I would be a hundred times worse off now if it hadn't been for them).

As Island Boy is now two-and-a-half, I am looking into pre-school for him for next year.

As I understand it, the age of three, when I started pre-school, is not necessarily the norm. But I really truly feel he would benefit from an extra year of learning to interact with other kids his age, and especially in a group setting. And the confidence in his abilities (we're starting to hear a lot of "No, I can't" from him lately, which also worries me).

My problem is in trying to actually find a place to send him. I have a very easy time identifying things that I don't want (far down Island, glorified daycare). I also have an ok idea of what I do want, although verbalizing it is a bit harder. But, I'm not sure that I can find exactly what I want on the Island. After asking other parents, I had heard a great recommendation for a Montessori school.....which turned out to be completely full, with no waiting list. I at least feel confident in this being a sign that that was not the right program for him. I just wish I knew how to tell which place *would* be.

So, now I'm back to the drawing board, feeling totally overwhelmed by the decision, but knowing that I need to do something, because my action will affect my child directly.


  1. It's interesting to see yourself in your toddler, isn't it? My mom laughs when I complain about certain things on Charlotte and says that those are qualities directly from me. At least we know what it's like to be in their shoes!

  2. Recently in a speech class that I took, we had to do a persuasive speech. And one classmate chose to do their's on homeschooling or keeping their children home for their preschool years. Apparently bringing your child to preschool doesn't help with improving a child's social interactions/social skills as most people assume. Preschool does help with math and reading, though. I'm no expert but maybe this is something you should look into if you're really worried about your son. I know that I was terribly shy as a child and I had no doubts that I would send my children to preschool, but when I had that speech, it made me reconsider.

  3. In the interest of full disclosure, yes, I do chiefly want him to gain social interaction with kids. But, we also know that Island Dad will likely be deploying next summer, and so I know that by September, Island Boy and I will be needing some form of break from each other. We are discussing a few different possibilities at this point, and I'm feeling confident that the right one for Island Boy will become clear to us.

  4. Montessori school seems like a good option... in fact i recently worked for a montessori preschool 2.5-5, must be potty trained and able to go on their own. The interactions the children have with one another and the addition of sensorial, math, language, and practical life (scooping, pouring, buttoning, tying, etc) works is a wonderful sight to see. I was truly impressed to see how independent a 2.5 year old actually can be given the chance to do something. Read the book Montessori Madness by Trevor Eissler. He compares all types of learning (home, public, montessori, etc) to each other.