There is a familiar place I return to here and there called THE ANXIETY ABOUT EDUCATION PLACE. Even though I see it down the road in the future, it always creeps in suddenly (can something suddenly creep?). I spent so much time in this place when my oldest was applying for pre-K. That was my first introduction to it. It was more raw when the middle one was applying for just one school, the only school we wanted her to attend. And then the stress of getting them to attend the SAME school for elementary was off the charts horrible (but I was also medicated during that time -- EW.)
I HATE the ANXIETY ABOUT EDUCATION place. Their schooling was a big unknown for us when we moved here...and we have always said: as long as we feel they are in the best place they can be for their education, we will stay here in this city.
And it has all worked out.
One thing I have learned: the TALK and the HYPE and the RIFF RAFF swirling around education is just that. There is really not a lot of substance backing this melodrama. I have found that if you set your intentions on the school, don't cheat the system, and MEET THE DEADLINES before they are due.....you will get good results.
We have had some snafus along the way, but in general we have been blessed with amazing educational experiences for our children...free and also not so free! ha!
So here we are...it's time for High School. And it feels bigger. It's that one process, that one step before we do it all again for COLLEGE. GULP. Geez, New Yorkers applying for college---it must be a breeze for us, because we have PRACTICED this several times over-pre-k, elementary, middle, high school, college----tests, interviews, applications, worry, student id numbers.....
I'm writing this and it's actually ALMOST OVER. My daughter and I spent the summer talking about, thinking about, taking lessons, giving lessons, picking out music, researching HIGH SCHOOL. I was the crazy mom emailing school administrators BEFORE the first day of school to make sure all t's were crossed and i's dotted. I got the paperwork in before schedule and read and re-read all the requirements.
She will audition for 4 schools, apply for a 5th and hope that she gets her first choice. The order of preference, ironically is the order in which she will audition. I thought it was a blessing to have the first and most important one over with FIRST...but then she fell ill 2 weeks before the audition. She missed an ENTIRE week of school leading up to the audition so we had to work on the stress of catching up there, missing volleyball games, and getting back to health for the big day.
Even the night before her audition she was coughing so hard she threw up! Her voice was still a bit muddled from the congestion and her A string broke 2 days before the audition! But! this is a place I have lived and moved and navigated before and because I had been preparing I would not let this throw me or her. We kept positive, can-do, WILL DO, attitudes and we sallied forth.
Audition one was last week. We shuffled into arguably the best performing arts high school in the city, if not the state, the country! and parted ways after just a few steps inside the building. I felt some tears well up as I watched that beautiful, capable, shining girl overcome these trials and walk into that auditorium with her head held high. 4 hours later I received a text: Vocal Done. Nailed it.
Relief. Joy. Pride. That one moment when everything came together.
Though she didn't feel AS good about her instrumental that day, she still left feeling wonderful, and whether she gets in or not, that (for me) is everything.
And now we wait.