Thursday, March 13, 2014

Court date (aka the miserable, horrible, no good, very bad day)

Court. Ugh.

I would rather have a dentist cleaning, an gynecological appointment, and a bunch of shots all on the same day than go to court again.

Basically it is being there at 9am, sitting till 2:30 then being told you can go home. Not being allowed in the room, not being told what it was for, and not in any way contributing to the process. Now imagine that with four kids, two foster parents, and some of the family of said foster children. It. Was. Miserable.

The worst part? I get to do it again in April. And then each month thereafter until Jesus comes back and takes me to a home without the juvenile court system.

The best/worst part was that A's dad, his girlfriend, and his parents showed up. First time he has seen her in 3 years. And of course he goes right into telling me how he wants her to come home, that he just didn't know where she was and couldn't keep track of her. And wanting to know where I live, who I am and exchange phone numbers. Being a first-timer to meeting "the family", I froze. I wasn't sure if I was supposed to be giving my information out and my thought process was something like this: they could come to the house unexpected! They could try to get her from school! They could call me and harass us!

Sure I might seem paranoid and judgmental but all of those things are very real possibilities when you are responsible for someone's child and they are not happy about it. I ended up telling them the city I lived in and that we would call them if they gave us their phone number. It gave me some space to think.

At the end of the day, A's dad gets visitation rights. I'm supposed to be getting a call from a local business that facilitates the meetings between kids and their family. I'm trying to be positive about this (and with her) but my heart breaks to think of sending A to his home and leaving H on her own. They don't get it yet as they are still in the stages of sisterly rivalry, but they need each other. And if A goes with her dad, they won't grow up together.

Update on the trauma assessment mentioned in this post. It was wonderful! We had a great lady (K I shall refer to her as) who sat down with us and for an hour, just got background information, filled in the timeline and generally talked about the girls family life.  She also called me tonight and we have another family meeting scheduled for next week. I asked her who would be there and I had to be the one to inform her that A's dad came out of the woodwork and he should probably be called. She thought he was in jail! 

Side update: I finally harassed our worker into getting a hold of H's birth certificate and social security card so we could get an official date of birth and last name. DFCS had the wrong last name, wrong birth date, and likely the wrong middle name as well. So now I need to redo all the school paperwork. I'm just so glad I can tell H for 100% certain those rather important pieces of information.

I keep feeling overwhelmingly tired at the end of each day. The kids are asleep by 9pm and before they came, I was going to bed between 10-11pm. Now I hit the pillow at 9 and don't wake up until my alarm goes off at 6:15am. Is this just an adjustment period of going from single to motherhood so quickly?

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