Dashing Deals

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Suckerpunched!

Here it is Simple Sincere Seeking Sunday. When I went to church this morning as always, the floor was opened for sharing what was going on in our lives as well as the opportunity for prayer requests. I don't usually say anything but this week I did. I explained that I was struggling with my feelings and keeping my focus where it needed to be. I shared that this week was scary and I was attempting to keep my focus on Jesus but I was overwhelmed with my own emotions and my feelings of betrayal. If you have not read my previous post titled 'Have You Ever Been Pancaked', I would highly recommend you do for this blog is a continuation of that story. So I ended that post with explaining that I had chosen the title and then had run out of time to write anything and I had headed off to the courthouse. When I got there I was not sure where I needed to go so I stopped at the information desk. She pointed me to the second floor and from there I was told what room the hearing would be held in. Of course it was being held in a side room and they had not marked the door with the number they had assigned it yet. I asked a man who worked in the court house to help me and that was when I stumbled upon Mark, Tia and the Sheriff that was her escort.

They informed me that Tia was still not being compliant and that we were going to be seen in front of the judge next. Mark began berating Tia. Asking her if she understood how much worry she had caused him and most likely me. I looked at him and said, "You need to keep my name out of this. I am not into berating my children. As a matter of fact I didn't have as much time to worry because you never even bothered to pick up the phone and let me know she was missing. You never called me when you called the police and you didn't call me when she was arrested. I got to learn about all of this from a sheriff." He looked at me and said, "Can we please not argue in front of our child." I turned and looked at him. I promise if my eyes were laser beams I would have sliced him in half. I said as calmly as I could, "Look, don't talk to me and we'll be just fine. I am hanging onto one strand of Grace and I swear if you talk to me again, I'll lose it." I turned back to look at Tia who informed me I had an epic fail where grace was concerned. She was right. I smiled at her. Right then my phone rang. I looked at the number and thought it was my mother's new home number since it started with a 765 area code. I answered it quickly, fearful of what was happening as she knew I was supposed to be in court. When I swiped it to grab the call, I said, "Make it quick, I've got exactly two minutes."

"Is this Wendy Glidden?" a female voice I did not recognize inquired. "Yes." I answered wondering who I was talking to. "This is Rachel with the Morgan County department of children services. Are you aware of an incident involving your children Michael and Marie?" I was puzzled as to why she only named two of the five children but I answered, "Yes. I am aware of it. I was there at the hospital. I met Mary. We put a safety plan in place." She said, "Oh. Yes. I know about that incident too. I am calling about another incident involving just two of your children." I could barely breath. 'What now?' I silently screamed in my head. She continued, "Do you recognize the names Cheyenne or Ciarra?" My head was spinning. "Yes." I stammered. "Do you know how old they are?" I could barely think. I answered, "Cheyenne is 4 and Ciarra is 3." She then asked me how they were related to Marie and Michael. "They are cousins I answered." Honestly they are their nieces but they are more like cousins and again I was so freaking confused as to where this was heading. She then informed me that Michael and Marie had been reported for sexually assaulting their cousins. I began weeping uncontrollably. She next informed me there would need to be a forensic criminal investigation performed and wondered when I would be able to bring the children in for that. She also said we would need to have another safety meeting with Mary, her, my mother and I and asked when that could take place. I replied, "Schedule it, I'll make it work." She said okay. I need to make a couple of phone calls. How long is your meeting going to take. I asked the sheriff if she knew how long we'd be. She answered about an hour. I then told Rachel I would call her in approximately one hour and I hung up. Tia looked at me and all I could do was cry. As if my day wasn't already hard enough. I know it is purely on the strength of God I was able to stand on my feet. Almost immediately we were ushered into the court room. I could not talk. I sat there with tears streaming continually down my face. I listened while the judge informed me that Tia's father had requested both a psychological evaluation and a drug screen. The judge thought both of those requests were reasonable and was going to grant them. He assigned Tia a lawyer and sentenced her to continue residing in the shelter until her next court hearing which would be somewhere between 10 and 27 days from today, Monday, August 5th, 2013. We, the parents were instructed to wait out in the hall to meet with Tia's probation officer. The room was spinning for me. I got up, followed Tia out of the courtroom and down the hall way. She looked at me and said, "I'm going to fail." which totally caught me off guard. Again, the room spun. I stepped into the elevator with her and somehow managed to say, "Must have been some party, hugh?" She said, "Yelp. It was." When we stepped out of the elevator I remembered I was supposed to be waiting upstairs and I got back in the elevator and headed back up to the 3rd floor. When I arrived Mark was talking with the probation officer. I apologized for following Tia and he said, "That's okay." I was still crying and I don't know what he thought I was crying about but he said, "I've seen kids like her before. She is tough today but she will go back and be in that room and reality will sink in. You'll see, she will soften up." Someone else came out and handed Mark and I both a sticky note with a name and phone number on it. As I walked away with the number in hand and headed toward the steps. Mark followed behind me. Through my tears I gandered at the sticky note realizing I had no idea who this person was. I stopped half way down the flight of stairs and looked at Mark as I held up my sticky note and said, "I only want to know who this is. That's it. Just who is this?" He said, "That's the lawyer for Tia. She's really good." I shook my head and continued down the steps. He called out from behind me, "This is hard for me to you know." I spun around and stated, "You know Mark, when Travis comes to visit and acts up and threatens to run off, I pick up the phone and I call your mother and ask her to let you know what is up. You know what that is called? It's called common courtesy, something you did not give me. You didn't talk to me then I don't care to talk to you now." and I headed quickly and angrily toward the center spinning door. Just as I stepped in and began to push the door forward, I heard him say again, "This is just as hard for me as it is for you. You know she was my baby from day one." That was the straw that broke the camel's back. That was the straw that broke my last stand of grace. I pushed that door in front of me so hard, I am positive the force caused Mark to come out behind me a little quicker than he should of. As he tumbled out onto the concrete I shouted angrily, "You were drunk our entire marriage. You beat me every chance you had. Exactly WHEN was she YOUR baby girl? You may live in some fantasy world but I live in reality." He took off in the opposite direction. Who knew he could move so fast!

When I got in my car, I called Rachel. She apologized for telling me the way she had. She actually said, "Had I not known you were not aware of the situation, I wouldn't have told you the way I did." I was having trouble following her and why she would have thought I should have already known and then I thought, she must have called my mother first and mom didn't call me because she knew I was in court. I told Rachel I did not know how this could have happened and wondered if there was any truth to it but promised I would not interfere with the investigation. I told her I was ready to quit my job and stay at home with my children. She told me not to make any crazy decisions. She reiterated that we had a safety plan in place and told me to remain calm. When I got back to my office, I called my mom to inquire if she knew anything and she said she had just been informed herself that day. I asked when and she hemmed around and said, "I don't know around 11." I was shocked. I asked, "Why didn't you call me?" She claimed it was because she thought I was at court. I said, "I told you I had to be there at one. I got the call from this lady two minutes before I entered the court room." My mom said, "Oh I'm so sorry." I excused her and then began discussing how I didn't know where this horrible accusation had come from. I was sure it must have stemmed from my complaint to the sheriff or perhaps the hospital. It was so appalling. My mother allowed me to go on. I told her somehow we would make it through this. I called my sister who insisted something was fishy and we were missing a piece of the puzzle. I called a friend and shared my awful news. You could say I was a mess beyond a shadow of a doubt. Later that night I rang my oldest daughter to inform her that she was most likely going to be getting a call regarding this accusation and in talking with her, she let the cat out of the bag. She had called in the report. As if that wasn't hard enough to swallow she chimed in with the news that my mother had also called in and reported it herself as Cassy had advised her to do to protect herself. I could barely breath. The conversation turned VERY ugly and I informed Cassy I was not going to listen to her talk to me like that and I said, "I am ending this conversation." Next I called my father who could not believe what I was saying. He advised me to calm down and not make any rash moves. As calmly as I could I rang my mother and informed her I knew she had been dishonest with me. I asked her how she would feel had her mother conspired against her in such a way. She answered that she would have felt betrayed. I said, "Yes. Exactly." I then told her that she and Cassandra should be thankful that I kept my nose in the bible and my focus on Jesus because that was the only thing allowing me to have any Grace at all. I informed her she was lucky my children had school the next day because I wanted to drive out to her house right then and grab my children from her. I said,"It is only because I want help for my children if this has indeed taken place and I don't want to freak them out by snatching them in the middle of the night nor do I want to do things out of anger that I am going to sleep on this tonight. I feel like I just got sucker punched and honestly I am reeling right now." She started to say something and I said, "Mom. Don't. I can't listen to you right now. I'll talk to you tomorrow."

My night has come to an end and I must get ready for bed. Tomorrow is another big day. Rachel is coming to my home to talk to me, the children and to do a safety inspection on my home. There is so much more left to this story and the betrayal isn't over. Stay tuned. I will update as this storm continues. Please keep me in your prayers.

Father, today I thank you for the fellowship I am able to enjoy every Sunday with the church you brought into my life three years ago. How much I have grown over the last three years. I am so blessed to have been introduced to Leavener and all the wonderful people who attend fellowship there. Thank you for Rusty and his constant teaching about where to keep my focus. Where would I be without you? Where would I be without your strength. I shudder to think. I am so blessed Father. Even in the midst of this awful storm I feel your love for me and I am hanging onto your promises. The evil one has come after me through all of my children. I have been betrayed by those I trusted and my feelings are hurt. I am going to do as Rusty suggested though. I am going to keep my focus where it belongs. All of this outside stuff, that is the work of the evil one and I refuse to fear him. He is nothing more than air. You are bigger and you love me. I know you have me. Thank you for your protection Father. I know you are leading me somewhere. I don't know where that is but I am trusting in you. For you are always faithful. You have always been good to me. Thank you for loving me so much. In Jesus name I pray. Amen.

Wendy, Mom of Many

© Wendy Glidden 2013
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