Thursday, February 17, 2005

I Don't Remember Getting Older, When Did They?

Smartmom still can't believe she has a thirteen year old son. It seems just yesterday Teen Spirit was bundled into a stroller bound for Mommy and Me, a toddler exercise class they used to attend on Sixth Avenue near Lincoln Place. One of the girls they met in that class just had her Bat Mitzvah. Another girl looks impossibly hip slinking down Seventh Avenue with her friends.

It's like someone pressed the fast forward button and all those cute babies became cute teenagers at a too rapid speed.

All this comes to mind because today will be an important and not altogether pleasant day for many of these former toddlers: the acceptance and rejection letters from the specialized high schools will be handed out at my son's middle school.

Yay or nay: Stuyvesant, Bronx Science, Brooklyn Tech, LaGuardia and the others have decided who's in and who's out. A rite of passage of childhood in New York City, it will be a day of pain for some and exhilaration for others. Hearts beating fast as they open their letters, Smartmom can only imagine what must be going through their minds.

And at school there's no one there to remind them that it's just a test, just a school, just a stupid education system.

In the coming weeks, the other high schools will be sending their letters out. Fingers crossed, fingernails bitten to the pulp, parents and teens wait, their futures in the balance.

In the midst of this Darwinian shake-out, Teen Spirit and the other thirteen year old Park Slopers exist in a universe of their own. They instant message each other, hang out on-line at Xanga, practice with their bands, eat pizza at Pinos.

They walk down Seventh Avenue feeling the force of their emerging selves: independent and so very alive. It's a mixed bag these teenage years.

A Mixed bag.

3 Comments:

At 9:23 AM, Blogger Little Light said...

I said a little prayer that Teen Spirit gets into at least one of the schools he's chosen. Good luck!

 
At 11:02 AM, Blogger elswhere said...

They give the letters out *in school*? They don't mail them home? Gosh.

 
At 12:58 PM, Blogger Savtadotty said...

Good luck to you and Teen Spirit. Keep us posted!

 

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