The kid's preschool class is going on a class fieldtrip to Manila Ocean Park tomorrow. I opted not to let her join them. I informed her then and she gave me her nod of approval. But of course, I knew she's bound to change her mind. As most kids would, anyways. And this morning, when it finally dawned on her that she's not going there with her classmates she started sobbing.
"Gusto ko sumama sa fieldtrip, Mommy! Gusto ko talaga!"
With the sobbing and that pitiful tone almost reaching the point of unbearable, I started considering the idea of calling the school to ask if she and Ate Inday can still join the last minute. But I took a deep breath and recalled the reason why I took the strong decision not to let her go. And I gave her my final word - No, she's not going this time. I told her she's been there already and I have pictures to prove.
"Pero hindi pa ako nakapunta don ng BIG na ako! Small pa ako nun, Mommy! Ngayon BIG na."
Okay, I rest my case. But I reminded her that next month we also have a scheduled trip there with her Ninang Yette whose visiting from Malaysia. Argument not accepted. But she conceded knowing she will never get her way this time.
Last year, when were rounding up prospective schools, one of the questions I posed to the school tour guides was about fieldtrips. I asked if they were required and what would be the consequence if we (or my kid) won't join. I had to ask that because I always felt that at 4 or 5 and even at 6, kids are not supposed to be subjected to fieldtrips because I find it torturous making them fall in line for a long time and I personally think being around so many people isn't very conducive to learning at all (i doubt if they learn anything in that trip anyways). If it was just a trip for a small group like maybe of 20 kids I might reconsider but of 50 is a different story. Add the parents to that and you have two buses filled with parents and kids all of different temperaments. So yes, I really meant to say I asked that question first because I do not want to be pressured into having my kid go on a fieldtrip. I just don't think it's appropriate. So anyways, the kid's school assured us it not a requirement at all. When you're 7 and able to really enjoy the long lines while chatting with school friends, little girl, I will let you join. (you see Mommy is no KJ at all. you just have to wait a little longer. and waiting is not a bad thing, you know)
But yes, I feel guilty now that she went into that drama this morning. I questioned my parenting. But no, I won't let one fieldtrip be a judge on how good or bad of a parent I am. I am no expert at this whole parenting thing. But I would like to think that I don't just make decisions at a snap of my finger. I study my options. I weigh the pros and cons. That should be enough for now (RIGHT?).
Some days, I wish this parenting thing came with a manual.