"A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2013." Che and Fidel.
Cohen: Behind the fairy floss, beneath Dada's sunglasses and hat, my darling boy
Emerson: Exploring at every opportunity, with that serious little face of hers
What a jolt those numbers give me. 42/52. My goodness. How true that old saying, 'the days are long but the years are short.' And so it has felt lately.
Yesterday, we had Cohen's first school interview, for Prep. Cohen explored the classroom, while Dave and I answered the teachers questions. She was quite surprised when we explained that Cohen has never been in child care and hadn't gone to Pre-Prep, having been at home with me until this point. It seemed assumed that each child going to Prep would have been to child care and Pre-Prep, though neither is compulsory. (Prep is compulsory in some states I believe, but not Queensland. We could wait until grade one to enroll Cohen, but I do think he is ready for school now.) She returned to the question on the form later to inquire, 'Not even a family day care?' in a tone of disbelief. Is it so uncommon these days to raise a child at home?
I felt as though she thought we had disadvantaged Cohen in some way, which left me feeling disappointed. I suppressed my urge to justify my decisions. I know his days are full of friends, books, craft, activities, playgroup, library trips, soccer - as any four year old's are. However, he will most likely be included in a program at the end of the year where he will attend the morning session of Prep once a week for three weeks. This way he can get used to the requirements of school and they can 'asses' him. The program is generally offered to fifteen children each year, so surely Cohen isn't such an odd one out?
It's funny how something can seem completely normal to you in one environment, and so foreign in another.