We're just a couple of weeks away from the start of high school, which I don't want to think about. So I'm reminiscing about preschool:
We chose my daughter's preschool because it was a high quality one, recommended by neighbors. We liked that the day was weighted heavily towards finger painting, music and play but included just enough minutes of drawing letters and thinking about numbers to prepare the kids for kindergarten. We chose it because the teachers we met on our visits were kind and looked at their students as unique individuals. We chose it because the director didn't freak out when I told her my child had diabetes. We chose it because when my daughter visited I had a terrible time getting her to leave, despite promising she'd be coming back regularly starting the next week.
The school had one more selling point, though, especially valuable to a mom of a kid with diabetes who had never been left with anyone but grandma. This preschool (and the church in which it was housed) was in our back yard. There are lots of things we don't want in our back yard, but for preschool, we were definitely in the YIMBY (yes in my back yard) camp. We walked out the back door, through the yard and entered the door of school. I was quite literally a stone's throw away should a need arise. I could (in my imagination at least) mix the glucagon while running through the yard, prepared to stab my daughter's leg as I ran into the building. I could arrive at a moment's notice bearing vats of water, prepared to calculate a bolus to correct a high. Instead, this convenience turned out to be mostly for my own peace of mind: I got called to the school twice because she wanted me to be with her while she sat out low blood sugars. Otherwise she was fine.
I probably would have chosen this preschool even if it had been across town, but I'm glad I didn't have to. It was scary then to put her into the care of strangers for 3 hours a day. It was scary for her to have to ask strangers for help if she didn't feel right. It was scary to imagine what could happen if nobody (including her) noticed she was low and she got to a point where she needed urgent help. It was comforting to all of us (including the school staff) to know I was around if needed. And it was comforting to me as I sent her off to kindergarten, to know how little I'd been needed after all.