I made the decision this morning to pull him out entirely. Actually, I made the decision last week - but it took a while to get up the courage to actually declare it officially. I had to discuss it in exhaustive detail with Marc (more exhaustive on my part, because Marc takes the perfectly logical stance that if he's miserable there, we pull him, but it would be good for him to try it for a few full weeks to see if it gets better first), and agonize and debate it with myself. Am I crippling him socially if I don't send him? Am I condemning him to a lifetime of hiding behind my legs and refusing to talk to anyone? If I was a better mother, wouldn't I have managed to raise a child like everyone else's, one that waves goodbye bravely and heads off to preschool without a backwards glance?
But in the end - it just felt WRONG to make him go somewhere he didn't want to be. He's just four. That's SO little - and it goes by so fast. Why rush this? On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, I drop Jess off at school at eight and don't see her until six thirty. And it's KILLING me to not see her. I miss her so much - and there's no need to push Sam out the door before he's ready. Give him another year at home - why not? It's not going to hurt him, not really. He has socialization opportunities, he's got four sisters. I've still got Harrison here two days a week, and Miss Jordyn comes to play all the time.
I think what it comes down to, for me, is that I trust Sam. I've learned that when he's ready to move from one stage to another, if I step back and let him do it on his time table, he does it with no problems. If I push it (like potty training, or weaning), it's an absolute disaster. So I'm going to hope that keeping him home this year, giving him a little more maturation time, will make kindergarten easier. I can teach him to write the alphabet and spell his name. He's polite, knows his manners, is very articulate and well spoken. He'll do fine in school, when he's ready to go. He's not ready right now.