This week Alyssa’s best friend turned 4 and to celebrate, her family invited Alyssa to have lunch with them at a Spur restaurant after school.
Since the day Alyssa started pre-school, her and her bestie had an instant connection and over the past 2-3 years we’ve gotten to know her and her family quite well. We just click, have similar family values and simply enjoy each other’s company. We’ve even sneaked doubled dates while the kids are at school 🙂
So when I got the call from Bestie’s Mom to find out if she could join them, I didn’t think twice about saying yes.
After the call though, I realised that it would be the first time that Alyssa would be on a play date minus Mom and Dad! Yet another life changing event which reminds me how quickly my kids are growing up. I then thought “Is she/Are we ready for this?”
After thinking it through and chatting to Kurt about it, I realised there probably isn’t an appropriate age or time for that first time… A parent would know whether or not their child is ready or whether you as a parent are ready to put your trust in the parents who will be watching your child. Isn’t it? We basically make that decision every day when we put our children in the care of their teachers or Nanny.
I also never had any “gut feeling” that it was a bad idea. In fact I had a good feeling about it and was very excited to tell Alyssa.
I however only told her about the play date the night before the outing, but boy oh boy…. I’ve never seen that girl so ecstatic. She even had a dream that night and woke up the morning telling us how she was at Besties party and they were dressing up and having fun.
Needless to say, she couldn’t wait to get to school and was super excited for her after-school outing.
From the moment Besties Mom picked them up, I got regular updates and pictures of their date. Alyssa was having a ball of a time and apparently “well-behaved”.
For the duration of her outing and whilst receiving the regular updates, I was getting just as many messages from Kurt … asking:
“Where are they now? Have they left the school yet?”
“Did you get any pics yet?”
“Send me pics of the girls”
“Did you get any updates again”
We picked Alyssa up early that evening and joined the family for some cake and tea. I could see how much fun the girls were having and knew it would be a tall task to convince Alyssa to go home anytime soon, but eventually (way past her bedtime), we managed to leave peacefully. The girls were, of course, exhausted after a long day of playing and having fun, so they were ready to relax.
After reading her bedtime story that evening and before our goodnight kisses, she said
“Mom, today was so much fun”
I’m so glad that her first playdate without us being present was a pleasant experience for all parties involved.
My little girl is growing up way too quickly …