Preschooler

{Before I start this post, I wanted to thank you all for your comments on yesterday’s grumblings. It REALLY helped me to hear that most of you don’t get much from your spouses in the way of birthday recognition or celebration. Knowing that I’m not the only one who has to make her own birthday special will make today infinitely better, so thank you. That is the best birthday present a girl could ask for. Oh, and a big thank you to Jjiraffe for telling me that BIG 33 is the coming of age birthday for a hobbit. I have really enjoyed that little tidbit as I turn 33.}

Yesterday I dropped my daughter off in the blue room. The blue room is for three year olds. It has its own bathrooms, and a separate reading and art center. And, most importantly, a water table. (I am going to need to send LOTS of extra clothes.)

The blue room has new teachers and new schedules and new expectations. Today, when I dropped her off, they were already doing circle time, and instead of singing songs with a few props the teacher was pointing at pictures in a book with a ruler and… Well I’m not quite sure what she was doing, or expecting the kids to do. All I know is that the Yellow Room teachers would have never attempted such a structured activity with that same group of rowdy little ones.

I have noticed that the vast majority of toys come with the label 3+ (and the admonishment NOT for 0-3). It feels good to be able to buy these, as I have been doing, now without the guilt. I’ve also noticed that a lot of toys and books I’ve been looking at for Isa have “preschooler” written somewhere on them.

My daughter is a preschooler. I know she’s still a toddler in a lot of ways, but in so many others she seems to be graduating to the realm of preschooler (from what I can tell these terms overlap. Preschoolers are toddlers but toddlers aren’t necessarily preschoolers?). Her language development is incredibly impressive, she can say pretty much anything she wants these days and she fashions her thoughts into grammatically complex and varying sentences. She follows the plots of stories, can identify how characters are feeling and sometimes even tell me WHY they are feeling that way (usually it’s because they have a boo boo. Boo boos are evidently the reason that 99% of sad people are crying.)

My daughter is starting to make connections too. When we see the Golden Gate Bridge in a picture somewhere she always connects it to the book Goodnight San Francisco or going to the Discovey Museum or even visiting Jjiraffe’s house. The other day we were watching My Little Ponies (yea, I know, don’t judge, at least not too harshly) and she suddenly realized to two of the smaller ponies (who don’t have “cutie marks” on their flanks–there was actually a bullying cry of “blank flanks” on the episode, which made me laugh out loud), to help distinguish them, were actually two of the ponies that she has as toys, and has named herself (we didn’t know their “real names” when we got them). That is when I realized that another smaller pony was also in the trio of toys she had owned for forever and I can’t tell you how excited she was to realize that her Uni, Via and Sook were in the pony show with the more easily recognizable Rainbow Dash, Twilight Sparkle and the rest of the gang. I have to admit I was impressed, I wouldn’t have spotted the similarities, despite knowing those three pony toys quite intimately. But my little girl can evidently spot them from a mile away.

Today, at Toys R Us I was actually in the board game section trying to find a game I could play with my daughter. Let me repeat that, a game I could play WITH MY DAUGHTER. A game with rules and procedures, where she has to follow directions and take turns. Of course I have no idea how well she’ll be able to participate in these games, but I’ve been so impressed with her Memory skills and Hidden Pictures abilities that I thought it was worth trying one out.

Heck, last week we even went to our first movie, in the theater. My little girl–my preschooler–is growing up. Quickly. Right before my eyes. Honestly, I’m having a hard time believing all that I see her do.

My little girl is abandoning her babyhood all over the place. She’s potty trained now, she doesn’t even wear a diaper for naps and she wakes up in the morning dry more than half the time. She can brush her teeth reasonably well (thought she still can’t spit or rinse) and she has even been experimenting with dumping water over her own head when we wash her hair. The only true vestige of her babyhood that we haven’t abandoned is her binki (which we only use for sleeping), and she is clutching to that soothing mechanism with all her might.

I guess what it comes down to is I can’t believe that my baby is now a little girl, a little girl who wears 4T (and even just size 4) clothing. A little girl who can climb to the top of the play structure and goes down the slide by herself, how can balance on a big girl swing and jump from high places. My daughter is no longer my baby girl and it’s hard to let go of who she used to be to make room for who she is now.

But I guess it’s good she’s growing up because soon she won’t just be a big girl, but a big sister. And I’m going to need all the help she can give me.

6 responses

  1. Happy Birthday!
    E started preschool a few weeks ago and I guess it was more of a transition for me than for him…seeing kids growing up is such a fun process (and scary sometimes!)..let us know which game you end trying with Isa, I still looking for one for E too. I heard that Hi Ho Cherry o was a good first board game….

  2. Happy Birthday friend! I’m sorry I didn’t have a chance to comment on yesterday’s post. Isa’s development sounds amazing! The reasoning and memory skills you are seeing are so cool and I know are a delight to watch. I know it’s going to also be incredible to watch her become a big sister in a few months. And BTW, wouldn’t it be great if we all lived in a world where simple boo boos really did account for 99% of our sadness?

  3. Happy Birthday!

    It’s lovely to hear about Isa growing up. Of course, I don’t have the “she’s not my baby anymore” pangs, but it is a delight to hear about her learning and embracing life. My 5 year old niece has just started school. That’s fascinating and hilarious to me! She’s getting so grown up.

  4. Happy birthday!

    G loves memory, we just don’t use all the cards, candy land, chutes and ladders, old maid and her favorite; slap jack. Not for long lengths of time mind you, but we’re playing nonetheless.

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