Some days, I wake up with a feeling of the phantom flowing of arteries near my neck, of blood being aspirated in my throat….
and, the very first thing that my tired mind touches down upon is the static-electric sensations attached to Hatred and Vengeance. I bask in the daydreams of horribly brutal images pertaining to those who buried me in a tomb of deceit and corruption; and happily allow myself the horrid pastime of entertaining the idea of revenge, someday…somehow.
I imagine walking into the courthouse with a pressure release belt made out of C4 and just Ka-Booming the place to ashes; I dream of physically throttling the piece of shit social worker Indira Anupindi until her eyeballs come out of her evil head; I envision her supervisor being mown down by a cowboy truck with 40” tires and then being dragged around by its tow hitch…I entertain the notion of watching the useless judge and her courthouse minions violently drown in arctic waters beneath a layer of solid ice sheet – pounding desperately against it with desperation and regret as the final expressions they will offer the world.
Now that everything is over, and the nightmare of being held hostage by the local courts through my delinquent child, I find myself being certain that wherever any of the above mentioned pieces of shit are now – they most definitely don’t give a second thought to the shambles they have left me with, in place of what should have been the rest of my life…just as certainly, comes the awareness of my own seething and rankling injuries; the ones inflicted by this specific arm of the corrupt government…
As I am prone to feel oppressed and uncertain down to a genetic level, these long simmering realities have come to weigh on me like an anchor over time; and my response has always been held in check because of the trickle my daughter might feel from my becoming a national news sensation behind whatever that response might be. I no longer give a fuck either way – not a care left at all in that context. I don’t think down the road when it comes to this issue of mine… not about who will be hurt by my response, not about how I might be personally hurt by my own response…not about anything else beyond Revenge.
And, on these days, it’s best if I just sit the fuck down and shut the fuck up.
This was how it always began, she knew; this was the miserably familiar feeling of progressing – long and far, and with much despair on the way – blood, sweat, tears – only to eventually carry you to the gut-wrenching realization that you’re patterning a circle – a loop, and nothing more. This seat in front of her word processor, its heavy anchor wrapped mockingly around her ankle, her drink to her left and her joint in her right hand – lodged stubbornly between her index and middle fingers; her mind unsettled on the huge task at hand.
This was a painfully familiar routine, a drill that she practiced as if it were her religious motivation; This was the scout to the expedition – the quiet before the storm; this was an integral part of her every day, twice a day – maybe more. The details behind that part are irrelevant, really…the point is meant to be that she knew the truth could never be set loose. This was Déjà vu; she sat down at that over-sized LCD screen repeatedly, ready to unleash those thoughts and feelings in a indefensible barrage of details and recollections; ready to unload her burdens onto the backs of those to which they truly belonged; she’d go into this state of being that she avoided as much as she was able to – impenetrable focus on those people who were responsible for all of the tragedy, so much unnecessary tragedy.
It was somewhere in between the grips of this dark, animalistic, dangerously focused state of being, and that of the next state in this repetitive sequence, that a fiber of her identity was lost each time. The emotional roller coaster that undoubtedly followed this sub-human concentration was inevitable, although manifesting in different ways with each new appearance. Sometimes she’d cry inconsolably out of shame and guilt, or become too unraveled to refocus her attentions on this chronicle at hand; sometimes she would psychologically work herself in a rage so blinding that she would black out and regain consciousness later in the day, without memory of the hours in between; still, other times found her miserable with denial and disbelief at her circumstance – rendering her so frustrated that she would embark on a new expedition via the World Wide Web, in search of a specific legal code, government policy, or the elusive attorney that would be able to get her on track with getting justice for her only child – now grown into a disturbingly sinister young person. She sighed, the hot breath that she released from her mouth reminded her of how thirsty she was, and she lifted her ice-cold drink gingerly to her mouth for a short gulp.
I gotta cut back on this shit…for New Year’s, I will…
Despite the fizzling tingle on her tonsils as she savored the refreshing sweetness of the drink’s bite, each swallow induced a wave of pain that racked through her head like wildfire through a dry meadow.
I really need to get those teeth pulled…soon…
Her mental notes always contained some sort of self-imposed delay attached to them; as she was not so much of a go-getter these days. Her spirit seemed to have just up and decided to fly somewhere else; or perhaps it had gradually just faded away with so much time spent being abused and beaten down, she didn’t know. Physical pain was not even always a surefire way to get her to force herself into the masses, and she would only resort to seeking medical treatment during the most dire of situations, given an exceptionally high pain-threshold. She had no desire left to mingle with the human-mutants that surrounded her – those despicable and savage creatures that had once seemed so different than her. As she sat, tonguing at the sore molars in her mouth for the umpteenth time that morning, her very core was hollow to its deepest fathom of being, and she knew it beyond any doubt. And at that, she would repeatedly find herself at a total loss for…well, for pretty much anything.
Any former plans, aspirations or goals seemed comical to the remaining logic residing within the empty shell that she walked around inside of. Nothing could ever make things right again, no matter what anyone, including herself, might pull out of a sleeve in attempt to force the appearance of true justice. Justice…
This word had long ago, dug its way beneath the tangible consciousness of her being – the vague ghost which her body beheld, and had been buried – at a time that felt like lifetimes ago. Justice…
A folly that remains depicted in every corner of the national court as a foundational concept of law, liberty and decency – the proverbial snapshot of a pair of scales, polished to a reflective, brassy shine, ever-balanced perfectly against one another – affecting the virtuous and the good of humankind. The iconic symbol of trial and judgment: the biggest mockery in American history.
“Because, what a bunch of horse-shit it all is in real life, the scales of Justice?”
she spat bitterly out loud;
“…as if those scales aren’t rigged to tip in only the most evil of fashions against what is TRULY GOOD and JUST – regardless of the matter at hand…”
The heat in her face became a noticeable burn across her cheeks and forehead, and the tiny wisps of baby hair at her light blonde hairline stuck there from the increasing layer of sweat, despite several attempts to blow it away. A loud bang sounded following the rap of her hand heavily against the desk at which she sat, struggling to find any useful weapon within her once highly impressive linguistic arsenal. She hated thinking about these things – as she knew all too well what the result of her brooding would be – stagnancy and frustration, despair and self-loathing beyond description; just more of the same routine that her life seemed to be defined more completely by everyday.
This, is the Juvenile Justice System’s very essence: confusion and perpetual lack legal articulation. The agenda in this hideous arena remains increasingly different from ‘Truth or Accountability’; the so-called ‘Home of the Brave’ is chock full of the world’s biggest chicken-shit trust-fund fed politicians and useless financial backers and/or holders. Yes, ‘the Brave’ being those in positions of power and action, congressional and legislative ring-leading clowns, community social workers and those that oversee their actions, judges, psychiatrists and medical doctors, varying “specialists” of the intrinsically heinous legal arena – a collective of those “brave” enough to steal the very light from the eyes of a child in need of her mother – to disgustingly and unashamedly make a buck off of the very families to which they claim the service of Justice.
Justice… the word made her stomach do cartwheels and the cavity-borne headache return. And, this was how it always played out for her. She became venomous then, an emotion so familiar and easily recognized by her character that its appearance onto the scene of her chaotic existence hardly attracted attention anymore; she forgot to breathe for a few, drawn out moments while she stared blankly at the screen, waiting for the right words to come; waiting to finally begin the report of despicable truths that had ultimately ruined the lives of her immediate family. Nothing…nothing…
The anger began its bubbling within her every nano-particle, frustrated and exacerbated by the lack of stimulus. She allowed the thoughts to come to her awareness, knowing from experience that the attempt to shut them out would be a futile one; experiencing the anticipated rush of a variety of uncontrollable emotion and perception, unleashing the memories intentionally now in feeble hope that the raw force associated with them would somehow miraculously be guided onto the screen – that this release will open the gateways to her collected verbal arsenal, the most lasting of any known weapons of war.
In a former life, she had been a poet – a spotlight verbal violinist in the most well-known operas – somebody who was able to change things, touch people, and create inspiration and awe through her exquisitely procured and ever-growing vocabulary. The details that her stories offered were vast and all-encompassing; each piece’s poetry was a feat that she carried, attached to a tether at the end of stick –exacting complete control over its every directional move – she contoured its path, essentially; so influential and dominant was she in the play of words in written form, that sometime – long ago, but for reasons unclear to her now – she began to take the gift for granted. And now, that gift had all but left her totally without. She had stupidly allowed herself to slip into the realm of self-righteousness: an unforgiving and deceptive place from which a human with a spirit will return without anything at all to love, to be loved for. Hollowed out and superficial, she had returned to write the chronicle at hand – the most important one she could ever create. The expressive art that she had beheld since her first memories began did not return along with her, however – leaving her in a perpetual state of the most torturous deficiency and need. Need…
The word made the corners of her navy blue eyes wrinkled as they shrunk tightly into a squint, with all of the co-dependent implications attached to its ugly, four-letter face. THIS NEEDS TO STOP…
Tomorrow is another day, and if she sees tomorrow – she will return to this drill and try again.
A very fitting ending to my week might have been an explosion that swallowed my entire section of gridlock in rush hour – nowhere to escape to – no matter if you use your blinker, or not; another fitting scenario just as easily could’ve been something along the lines of having my limbs tied to four horses that were subsequently giddy-upped four different directions; or I maybe should have ended up asleep in some dirty crackhead’s tunnel inside of that horrid “sculpture” thing that I spent several days of last week staring at from a cush hotel balcony…that would have sucked.
The ten days leading up to yesterday seem like a dreamscape to me now, somehow – in a surreal and foggy kind of way; the entirety of the emotional expenditure on my part has left me drained, and sensing a question mark floating above my head when I try to think too hard about why that is. I have decided to let it roll off my back for now – all of it; it’s too diabolical and dramatic for me to wrap my head around, anyway. All that I know for sure is that I have lost my focus lately, despite my progress in therapy and my expanding comfortable environments (good sign!), it is suddenly clear to me that I have been quite “functionally” dissociated and detached throughout.
It’s the final “other shoe” that needs to be dropped before I can possibly breathe again like I used to. The tension and anxiety that are attached to Boo’s upcoming 18th birthday and release into a distant community, on her own and without any preparation or real world social skills – well…the underlying dread and fear have rendered me bassackwards on pretty much a daily basis for so long now that it has come to feel “normal”, almost acceptable on some days. But in truth, this ongoing stress factor for me has done a good job at riding me hard; and these days, I guess it’s time to try like Hell to put me away soaking wet.
The darkness that my life has gradually resigned to, as a result of the past six years of Living Hell in a Waking Nightmare that is directly attributed to, as well as executed by – the local courts and government funded agencies – remains as a hue that my words cannot possibly describe with any justice or worthy depiction; the needle went off the vinyl so many years ago and there has been only the hideous, brain-aching sound of the resultant scratching ever since. The professionals charged with protecting my child have collectively gang-raped me (metaphorically speaking) in succession for over six years – legally, and without shame. They have broken my pockets through repeatedly relocating my Boo further and further away in distance, and then denying me the agreed upon (prior to any of the relocations, of course) financial assistance with the lodging/traveling expenses required to maintain any kind of real “relationship” with her afterwards. These so-called professionals have been the CRIMINALS more often than not, the in the grand scheme of it all.
Yet – nobody gives a second fuck about it…because it is unbelievable right? It only happens to people on TV or in a different state than ours, right? Sadly, anyone you see in the news with similar stories is only even shown on the news because something irreversibly tragic and impossible to sweep under a carpet somewhere has happened to that person’s child(ren). I would love it if someone – ANYONE – could successfully show me any form of lasting justice in the Juvenile Court System, nationwide. I search and search these days for any documentation that sways an opinion in the direction of such a notion; one thought of Boo, and my blood starts to boil, naturally. Yes – Boo has FINALLY seen a small piece of the justice due after the Living Hell that she has been forced endure for the last SIX PLUS YEARS…but it’s hardly enough.
Notably, these crucial and trying years have been spent being forcibly separated from each other by the very same individuals and agencies that set Boo on top of the burner to begin with all that time ago. Notably, the tragic and disgustingly long line of events that have transpired as direct (and indirect) results of the Judge as well as the local DFCS’ initial fuck-ups through Failure to Protect/Failure to Act/Failure to Follow Procedure continues to be swept aside to all corners by every “professional” involved. Notably, anybody with any empowerment to have helped Boo receive said justice when it still might have meant something to her – as a child victim to a Pedophile on the county Payroll – has opted NOT to exercise such powers in the sake of a child’s fundamental human rights to be unmolested while under the COURT ORDERED “care” of an institution.
The sun ceased to rise
on the morning that followed,
the curse of Her figure amidst the darkening skies;
hearts began to crumble
at first glance of the very same sight,
a darkening of any light against Her Banshee cries;
Her shape only grew and shifted
as She wound her impetuous impositions,
stitching threads through every pair of lips and eyes;
silencing the dumbstruck crowd
unwilling to do anything that is right,
cutting down anyone who counters Her Army of Lies.
The moon has never hung again
since Her forces invaded the heart of man,
in a final stand against what Shiva plans to realize;
the stars have faded notably
to see one twinkle has become rare to behold,
in a black sky where a constant shimmering once occupied;
and it is Her, who has done this
bled the red of my heart into a dry wasteland,
and left the most sacred of ancient divinities all but demystified.
The Destroyer arrived in 2007
to eat both of my arms as they cradled my Boo,
She never made me any indemnities, never tried to compromise;
a wake of hellish destruction follows
closely on the heels of Her stinky, filthy sandal-feet,
leaving the likes of me lucky to be hardly memorialized;
and so the show goes on today
Shiva the Destroyer still reigns highly,
I bow my head out of necessity as she passes by,
so I can keep it on a little longer and plot Shiva’s final demise.
They have already officially tried to block me from the courthouse today; they are using the ol’ “she does not cooperate under the code of the law” bullshit…which is true, I do not cooperate with their destructive plan to ruin Boo’s life, and never will. Despite the fact that there is not a shred of evidence that would back the pathetic social worker’s attempt at keeping me out, there have already been red flags raised up over my presumed parking spot, downtown, across from the courthouse where Boo is as I type this.
I will go anyway, and I will park there anyway, and I will get out by myself and walk into the courthouse like it’s my job, because it is.
They cannot keep me from a public courthouse or courtroom unless I am held in contempt; which hasn’t even come close to happening yet…
All of my friends and cyber family:
TODAY is a BIG BIG DAY for Americana and Boo, please send us your good energies and/or prayers. WE NEED THEM.
Here goes nothin’….
I’ve been walking on wire
high above a horrific crime scene,
looking down at the sheer
size of such a bloody tragedy
the yellow tape is stretching
for miles across the trees
and the vultures circle
the tight rope
I’ve been walking.
I look down, muted sounds
while little dots of people
mull their ways around
most of them don’t care
that I’m watching
from the air,
but a few, I see
have taken notice of me
magnified by a cross-hair.
They will try to kill me,
they’ve tried so many times
to shoot me down
from the heights I’ve found,
but they can’t seem
to tap that bead.
And so on I look
bullets flying right at me
I do not falter,
just too desperate to see
the object of this circus show,
the victim of this scene…
Is it my baby that you
have down there
amongst such a
All I want answered
is this simple query
put down the rifles
and answer me.
They know what I’m after
and they know just as sure
that I won’t be going
a damned place without her.
But, I’ve got a shocker
Folded into my sleeve
and it’s something that
none of these cowards are
expecting from me.
This is what happens,
with all of this time
they’ve given to me,
my mind has mapped
its very own crime scene,
and mine’s filled with bodies
of them, not her and me.
from my high place
above the green trees,
and once it’s all done
I’ll climb down finally
for my only baby…
I know that she’s here
I can hear her calling to me.
But I never could find her
amongst so many
other dead bodies,
she screams to me
The haunt of my dreams.
I have this plaster hand…
Likened to yours;
Hanging above the kitchen door…
The one we made so long ago…
On Christmas Eve Day, just bored…
I have a poem written…
By your tiny hand;
As tiny as the one that hangs…
Above the kitchen door frame…
It says “Mommy I Love You”…
And the Gods help me…
If when I pass it by, I don’t hear the words…
In a sigh, a whispering…
I keep a tiny, silver jewelry box…
The one you saved up for;
Inscribed across the dusty top …
Is chiseled in, beautifully:
“I Love You Mommy”…
And “Mommy” dies a little more…
I have all these haunting memories…
Of having future plans;
Fulfilling hopes and dreams…
Just you and I surviving…
Getting back up to stand…
I saved these Christmas things…
Yours and mine;
Stored away like a box to mourn…
Every year, when it’s opened again…
And looks the same…
As the years before…
I held on to your special ornaments…
All of them;
Though I never hang them high…
I never get a tree anymore…
I see no reason why…
But I keep these things…
To remind myself…
Of the twinkle lost to my eye…
I held on to so many things…
To keep you somehow, near…
Closer at least…
Than wherever you are…
I have this little butterfly wing…
You brought home;
You flew it behind you like a kite…
A colorful ghost that chased you…
Right out of second grade…
I find these notes you wrote…
To me; To Mommy;
They read your apologies…
For spilling toothpaste on the rug…
And I want to come find you wherever you are…
And tell you that rug never mattered to me.
It is December 5 today; 20 days away from the worst day of every year. In twenty days, I will spend another Christmas holiday alone, without anyone considered as family – without anyone who really cares one way or the other about the status of my presence – by 20 days from now, I will again be wishing for death, fast or slow.
All of the days leading up to that day will be filled with bad feelings and experiences, triggers and recollections that make me on edge and cranky as Hell; not a single day between then and today will leave me feeling even semi-complete, as I shop for gifts for the normal people in my life who celebrate the holidays like normal people – pretending.
All of the nights in between Christmas and last night will suck just as badly as the days, no rest for the wicked…or broken-hearted. I will dream of things that will never be and never could’ve been – wake up with that gut-empty feeling and feel afraid for three straight hours with each sunrise – never learning to put my finger on the source of these feelings to stop it, despite my frustrating efforts.
And Christmas Day, itself:
I will sleep as late as I can in an indentation at the edge of my cold bed – between it and the cold wall – I will force my tear-singed eyes to remain closed for as long as I possibly can because I won’t want to open them on that day, I promise. It feels as if the vicious cycle of my existence always gets close to erupting at this time of every year; everyone knows to leave me alone, everyone knows that there’s nothing they can do for me – there’s no solutions to offer or insight that’s worthy – everyone knows.
If I were stupid or lonely enough to expose myself to my extended family on that day, I’d regret it rather quickly; and eventually wind up saying something fucked up to a member of my own family in an over-anxious, depressed and defensive state, before storming out in tears. Been there, wrecked that. I call this entire song and dance “The Circle of Holiday Death” – it happens over and over and over and over. Each time that my heart, mind-state and blood pressure begin to “normalize” after the re-opened wounds, it’s Christmastime once again, and it all starts over.
People will ask me if I am okay until I will begin to respond with anger and irritability; they will not understand. Even my closest friends will avoid me because they simply CAN NOT offer me comfort in any way and they know this (the friends who have not already become totally overwhelmed by my reality and disappeared, altogether, that is).
I will seethe will anger at certain thoughts during this time of year: the people who have created this Living Hell for Boo being able to happily celebrate around a table with their own loved ones, their own precious children; my baby spending the day alone in a locked cage while being told that she’s unimportant and that everything that’s happened to her is her own fault.
IT HURTS ENOUGH TO MAKE ME DERANGED…
And through it all, I MUST keep my grip on composure; for I am NO good to the (Gods willing) older Boo if I end up in prison or dead before she turns 18. I do not plan on abandoning Boo ever again – – no matter how fucking bad it hurts me to follow through with. SHE NEEDS ME; even if she doesn’t know it yet. I have long been aware of the fact that I can’t undo whatever it was that did Boo; I can only build from where we stand, upwards. Our “relationship” is so far gone that I don’t feel as if it’s even possible for us to grow any further apart anymore.
So I guess there’s just one direction to go with it all, when it comes to Boo.
Boo suffered Night Terrors since she was old enough to dream, I think…
Even before the attack on her mother – by her father, she always openly dreaded sleeping. She struggled mightily against the act of actually falling asleep since she was a newborn, seriously…she used to do regular face plants into her cereal bowl at night in her high chair at the kitchen table with her father and I. Even as an infant, her sleeping schedule was that of a middle-aged, workaholic adult.
I remember so many frustrating nights with her in her room, trying to lull her to sleep somehow: through traditional bedtime stories, songs, back and/or arm “tickles”, just my quiet presence in the bed beside her little, restless form. I remember how she used to draw invisible things on the wall with her tiny finger in the darkness, in total silence, thinking about Gods know what…I don’t know if Boo still has Night Terrors, but… I would venture to guess her Night Terror has likely evolved into something much more horrible than it ever could have been during her childhood. I wish I knew my Boo at all, anymore…
I can say that I now suffer from something similar to the psychological thing known as Night Terrors, as well. Oddly I didn’t experience anything like it throughout my surgeries and hospitalization period – maybe my brain just wasn’t capable of such things back then, who knows? It’s only getting worse as time goes by, too – it’s becoming kind of a problem for me as of late…I can’t really sleep anymore. I just semi-sleep on the tacky surface of this place called Slumber…I ‘dream’ in rapid succession non-stop from the time I sort of fall asleep until I finally “wake up” between 5 and 5:30am in a fucking layer of Jello-sweat and barely able to catch my breath. I usually can’t recall any details of my nightmares …I just know that whatever is happening in my dream-scape is stuff that leaves me feeling terrified and jumpy and paranoid as fuck for the first few hours of every day…no fun. My therapist always defaults everything that I go through during the Holiday Season back onto that factor in itself – especially these days, since I truly and genuinely HATE this season with all of my hollow heart. But I’m just not so sure that he gets me completely, so I continue to doubt his generalized and seemingly lazy opinions of me and my issues.
(They say that’s a red flag symptom of mental illness/instability: second-guessing your shrink like it’s a sport and you’re the Champion) …Fuck ’em….
I do not want to start having to take pills to sleep; I also don’t want to gradually become so delirious from lack of sleep that I lose it, altogether…I don’t want to face the Holidays all over again when I feel like I am still not even recovered from last year’s painful experiences with it…I wish it were different – I used to love the Holidays; I wish I weren’t stuck in this precariously teetering state on the ledge anymore – I wish I could just suck it up and BUST A GRAPE – good, bad, or life-sentence. There is no “better” in the future when it comes to Boo and me; and it hurts like Hell.
In 2012, nearly four entire years after Boo had been sexually victimized by an adult sub-contracted county employee at the residential “treatment” facility where the courts had ordered her to reside, another child at the same facility came forward with allegations so similar to Boo’s, that the “professionals” in charge of monitoring those in close contact with the Juvenile Wards in that facility were forced to finally take it seriously. This time, the nine-year-old victim had been under the predator’s consistent “care” for the essentially the entireduration of time that filled up te period of time between Boo’s allegations against the scumbag and her own – four long years (which means he had been preying on her since she was approximately five years old).
This girl’s story was so eerily consistent with details from Boo’s accusations from years prior – from a time before the second victim had even been court-ordered to the facility yet – rendering any collective conspiracy theory between the two girls as obsolete. Boo and victim #2 never met. Boo had already been shamed and exiled from the facility before victim #2 arrived.
For me, the first thing that stabs unfailingly at the backs of my eyeballs upon adding up these variables: is undoubtedly a sense of absolute disgust… most notably because every single one of the victims behind the very first one (Boo) was TOTALLY avoidable and DID NOT HAVE TO HAPPEN. We all know too well, the ways in which childhood sexual trauma can change the course of one’s life forever – creating darkness that casts it’s shade across every existing space and time for the Survivor; we all know how this crucial pivoting point in the collective story of abuse and recovery has the power to steer the rest of the victim’s life in one direction or another, solely based on the initial reaction and response.
Had Child Protection Services, the Police, and/or the Courts actually handled the “investigation” in a more appropriate manner when Boo spoke up in 2009, forensics would have likely put the animal behind bars back then – BEFORE HE WAS ABLE TO ASSAULT AND PREY ON ANYONE ELSE!
Had the Department of Family and Children’s Services acted appropriately during such a traumatic and life-altering instance for Boo, i.e. given her any kind of treatment for sexual abuse/trauma as is consistent with widely acknowledged psychiatric and medical care, done a “rape kit” for collection of forensic evidence immediately upon the allegations being stated openly (this NEVER happened at all), offered support in the forms of psychiatric and emotional follow-up treatment as is consistent with widely practiced sexual assault treatment globally, Boo’s chances of recovering from such a horrid experience would have naturally been much better in the long run. As it was, Boo was not only discredited and discounted by officials in control; she was also ridiculed and punished for bringing a pedophile to the attention of the courts that employed him.
A disgustingly lengthy list of other victims was enabled to grow during the time frame between when Boo (Janey Doe AKA Victim #1) was silenced sent away, and the time when “Janet Doe AKA Victim # 11” came forward with a story almost identical to that of my daughter’s – from almost a half-decade earlier. I don’t need to emphasize the fact that every single victim on that list after Boo was essentially assaulted by the Department of Family & Children’s Services and juvenile courts – given that these entities had been made fully aware of the Pedophile on the county payroll, but had chosen to ignore such knowledge and continued to employee the sexual predator.
Around the time “Janet Doe” came forward, and the Pedophile was finally arrested and taken into custody, preceding a slew of official questioning and arraignments, I was successful in retaining a high-profile lawyer who specializes in child sex crimes. He had literally just buttoned up a case in which he had publicly exposed an entire string of U.S. Olympic Swim Team coaches for sexual crimes against Olympian child swimmers that went on for decades back through history. He assured me that he could help despite the legal bindings tied around my life through the disposition relating to Boo’s status as a “ward of the court”; and quickly set to work in doing so. Unfortunately, and for reasons still very vague and unclear to me (because the laws that define juvenile courts nationwide – are unintelligible – even to those who write them), he and I quickly realized that the pending lawsuit was to be unjustly short-lived because of this very element.
I was not allowed to go after the county Department of Family & Children’s Services for the absolute negligence and cruelty that this agency displayed throughout such a heinous ordeal – one that was cultivated and enabled by the Department’s very own procedural outline. Technically, I was not allowed to go after anyone at all from a legal standpoint: I was not Boo’s legal guardian any longer by that time, despite my continued iron-clad grip on what are described as my lingering “parental rights” in this courtroom (a concept that is painfully hilarious in hindsight, as such “rights” never exist at all in this pit of legal Hell). The next road-block of Boo’s justice appeared then: in the form of legal constraints set forth by the code that determined Boo as “UN-representable” in the eyes of the Superior Court. She had been deemed a Ward of the Court, wiping away any legal standing I formerly held in regard to my ability to protect her situations such as the one we were glued into. In such circumstances, there is no one at all in a role to seek justice for the child victim – when the child victim has been victimized by one the county’s own. STAND STILL.
After several months of legal research and regular daily complaints to varying county officials about the total injustice being done to Boo right under everyone’s noses, some reference files I had assembled from another county’s online procedural handbook (as my county conveniently provides no such documents for public use) finally broke through and Boo was assigned a Guardian Ad Litem through the juvenile courts. This was something that it turned out – should have been done from the beginning of the lawsuit, but such information was never outlined or defined by the juvenile court judge who allowed the lawsuit to begin (certainly not an omission by mistake, as the result was another lengthy thwart to Boo’s very justice). Months had passed by during the waiting and judicial red tape; the DA had been building what he describes as an “airtight” case in criminal court at the same time that my private lawyer was jumping through lawsuit hoops as well.
In the end, here’s what I know to have happened for sure:
In the end, Boo’s GAL (Guardian Ad Litem) (assigned by the same courthouse that was responsible for denying justice a child victim of sexual assault thus far) filed a suit against the residential facility organization in which Boo resided when she was groomed and preyed upon by a grown man on its staff – a sub-contracted agency that can be legally disconnected from the Department of Family & Children’s Services in regard to any liability. After this step in the process, I was blocked completely out of the entire thing from that point on, and, in fact – was intentionally avoided and legally restrained from any future information of the lawsuit’s outcome as well. Over a year passed by without any word from anyone, including the attorney I had hired who was now working with the GAL only – on Boo’s behalf.
He refunded my retainer, asked me not to contact him any longer about Boo’s pending case, and never contacted me again – except for one time, about one more year down the road: when he emailed me and said that the case “had settled” and he thought I might want to look into a private treatment option for Boo that was closer to home “because she should no doubt be able to afford any treatment facility of her choosing from now on…” When I replied to ask him if he could elaborate any further – In order for me to have a fucking leg to stand on in following his suggestions regarding a transfer for Boo to somewhere that might actually help her somehow – somewhere she wouldn’t be looked at as “the enemy” by people under the same umbrella as the man who violated her at age 13…?He said he could not give me any more information, and that I could not contact the GAL directly either, of course (That would be too easy and make far too much sense in the big picture of Boo’s justice, after all). The whole circus came to yet – another STAND STILL.
As of now, two years AFTER the lawsuit settled on some mysterious ground – agreed to by mysterious and elusive representatives of people who are mysteriously kept in the dark against all rhyme or reason – Boo has no knowledge or information regarding this supposed “settlement sum” that theoretically could have afforded her countless comforts, including the basics of support and acknowledgment of the tragedy that she has endured at the hands of a child molester and his professional posse. I am not even sure that a lawsuit took place at all. I have no way of finding out because I have been black-balled in the files, if they exist and am repeatedly shut out by any door on which I knock for answers. I have no legal standing, despite the full awareness on everyone’s part that I am the ONLY PERSON WHO ACTUALLY GIVES A SHIT ABOUT BOO. They all know exactly what’s been going on behind the curtain, and behave as if it’s acceptable – on even the most fundamental levels of humanity – by enabling the sickeningly broken system to keep me from seeking justice for Boo. Justice is intrinsically warranted when it comes to children, everyone knows that, naturally –children are innocent; even children who are troubled and struggle with authority and who have behavioral issues are innocent to the ways of the world as they are young and inexperienced – unable to properly fend for themselves. That is why nature is sure to give the young a set of parents to watch over them. Often, children are faced with life under the watchfulness of a single parent, but nature always gives an innocent young creature a guardian to protect them until they are grown enough to be solo.
The processes of this court are unnatural. The lack of safeguards to the fundamental rights that define parenthood is preposterous and absurd.
The laws that define its code go against the very essence of natural intuition and any common good. The procedural format of this failed vision of child protection creates an arena in which the single, although loving and very capable parent of a high-maintenance and behaviorally challenged child – is systematically put on trial before a “judge” and the entire county Department of Family and Children’s Services with no legal support or guidance (despite an entire section of funding being spent annually on the so-called “court-appointed attorneys that are “provided” but who serve no purpose other than standing around and looking stressed beyond the point of being able to answer your questions), beaten down psychologically, mentally, financially, and spiritually – and being thrown to the wolves as her child is whisked away to another state. The actual outcome of this court’s interloping is sheer demolition to countless lives without a second thought about it. What the process has done in my own case and that of Boo has been to take her away from a worthy mother and replaced that worthy mother with the sickeningly inadequate surrogate of the “court” for guardianship and supervision and daily interaction. Why would anyone with half a brain cell have ever really believed that such a process would serve an already struggling child well? You’re telling me that the lawmakers and politicians who call the shots behind the laws that govern Boo and I’s personal dynamics aren’t more knowledgeable regarding the fucking things that they are passing laws on? Really?
While, in reality, any parent or guardian who responded to his/her child’s allegations of sexual assault in any way remotely similar to the ways in which the Department and the courts have responded to the allegations made by a “legal ward under its care supervision”, would be put in jail for accessory to such filth and exploitation. Also notable, is the court and social services’ long history of persecuting a parent based solely on a past accusation – validated or not; tell me why then, was it “acceptable” for a man who had been accused of sexual assault against a minor ward of the court to continuing working with kids for years afterward…who’s really the perpetrator here? Any mother who knowingly stood by and allowed numerous kids to be violated would be undoubtedly strung up from a tree and lynched publicly. Similarly, any parent who allowed their teenager to repeatedly go missing for months on end without actively searching for her would be considered as disinterested and uncaring, then possibly charged with neglect. But since the system is so obscure and confusing and hopeless, it’s perfectly okay AND legal for it to execute such traumatizing and despicable acts in its role as a child’s replacement guardian. There is no one to stop the courts from continuing the bullshit facade of “juvenile justice and child protection”; and unsurprisingly, this corner of the Superior Court is completely closed off to the media due to the “privacy laws that protect the information belonging to minors involved”. Whose got the bloodiest hands?
Song: Dear Mama
Lyrics: “I know I can always depend on my Mama…”
Hey, first off Happy Birthday you turned 35. I hope its okay. I’ll be 17 in 41 days!
I know you’re super angry with me so I’m not even gonna talk to you about my experience out there last time…but I want to let you know. You know me, I’m not gonna say sorry because I’ve said sorry so many times and I never got better. If anything, I got worse. I want you to know though Mom it’s not your fault and it is all on me. I want you to know I’m sorry for acting a fool and not doing anything I’m supposed to. I’m addicted to that life-style…
I want you to know I miss you a lot, I miss talking to you. I miss you a lot. I’ve never gone this long without talking to you. I’m sorry I am such a mess. If you wanna call me, you know where I am.
Oh obviously you know my Dad died. Sad. Sad. Sad.
One thing that I have always found to be highly annoying and socially antagonistic for those of us who struggle to make the simplest of ends meet – is the fact that community-based programs for children with behavioral issues are so out of reach to the targeted population who need them most.
My daughter had been displaying severe and notably precocious behaviors for more than three years before I was finally able to push my way through the proverbial red tape and connect both of us with the government equivalent of “treatment” resources; and then, upon finally being given the necessary “referrals” to track down such elusive “treatment”, I was very disappointed to learn that it consisted of little actual treatment to speak of. The available resources were mostly programs and that I had already tried without success.
The “Treatment Plan” provided through the resources made available to me after YEARS of searching was nothing more than a hodge-podge of various interns who needed the hours spent on my family’s problems in order to receive a degree:
1. A non-English speaking psychiatrist who saw my child once a month for a half-hour session, strictly for the purpose of prescribing the ever-changing array of cutting-edge psychiatric medications to my then six-year-old child.
2. A weekly support group for each of us in which we could separately share our experiences with peers in “similar situations”, and receive feedback and support (This was the BEST part of any services I’ve received thus far).
3. The installment of a “Wrap-Around Team” as a family maintenance tool; this was a cocktail of several community programs that involved having one or two social-work apprentices coming into our home at least three days weekly, for approximately four to five hours each time.
NOTE: The “wrap-around” team provided during this time consisted of the following revolving appearances by five different people; two of whom we had been assigned to upon beginning services through Eastfield Ming Quong, Families First AKA EMQ and/or EMQFF – the same entity as the residential treatment facility in which Boo was later sexually assaulted by a staff person.
As I proceeded to envelope myself within the realm of mental health advocacy for my only child, who struggled quite obviously with self-control and impulsivity issues, I found the process for special education and the acceptance of an I.E.P. (Individualized Education Plan) to be exceptionally daunting and near impossible to navigate.
The task of getting an Individualized Education Plan accepted and assigned swallowed up an entire year of time during my girl’s fourth grade school year. I am an intelligent human being who is well-spoken, written, and read; with prime communication skills and am very capable – and I was shocked at the realization that it is likely that parents of average or less-than-average intelligence would be completely unable to make his or her way through such a diabolical and detail-born administrative routine – to the detriment of his or her struggling child.
After the two entire school-year calendars that it cost out of my child’s once promising educational career, she was finally deemed eligible for the services of an I.E.P. by the middle school administration when she was eleven years old. By that time, her behavior and basic traits had developed into a calculating, manipulative, and unreliable adolescent.
Her behaviors at school were continuing to escalate to dramatic levels on a steady basis. The constant shame and embarrassment began to take over my own life, as well; in response to the unnecessary and excessive lying she did to her teachers and counselors about me and our home lifestyle. The tall tales and dramatically exaggerated dialogue became a regular hobby for her – because of the instantly gratifying reactions that she unfailingly received from telling them. Often times, the school officials would summon me to the school for emergency meetings and conferences because she had said some off-the-wall things again that were simply just too bad for them to ignore – the way that I like to believe they would of done if her crazy stories had held any truth.
It’s very difficult to try and describe to another human being – the spiritual and psychological tolls that become taken on the parent of any child who is similar to mine. As the survivor of a near-fatal marriage, the only thing that comes close to the circumstantial chaos of a battered woman’s mind state, in my experience, would undoubtedly be that of a diabolical, unruly and explosive child. Take that factor and add to it the fact that I am a single, low-income, rehabilitated heroin addict-mother who works full-time to try and get myself and child by from day to day – and the outcome of our story seems undoubtedly clear, in hindsight.
Of course, life usually goes that way for me if I’m going to be honest with myself…and that is surely part of the reason that I have become so frustrated and impatient with the entire world around me – because I can’t help but to harbor awareness, no matter how distant and vague it may be, that when all is said and done and I am burying my only child, I’ll look back on this all and be able to see the creases and wrinkles of the unfolding tragedy.
I vividly recall the day that I received a call at the tax firm where I work from my daughter’s sixth grade core teacher; he asked me permission to be frank – which I promptly granted him with my heart in my throat – before he sympathetically spoke again over the line.
“Listen Ms. X, I don’t know what you do for a living…it’s none of mine or anybody else’s concern or business, really…” his words came nervously yet his voice remained calm and his tone quite matter-of-factly. “…but Boo seems to have the compelling need to share things with class – along with the parent-aids who may happen to be there on a given day – that you are a stripper –“ he cleared his throat quickly twice; “…an erotic dancer or what not…” Silence on the line. “…whether you are or you aren’t a dancer, Ms. X, I just feel like you should be made aware of the talk on the playground these days; forgive me if I am out of line or inappropriate for calling – believe me, it’s quite embarrassing from this end to discuss with you –“, his voice trailed off to almost a whisper, “…keeping the lines of communication open, as you requested, that’s all…”.
Now, when it comes to psychological warfare, my daughter’s arsenal has been stacked like a WWII bunker since the approximate time she was old enough to begin to grasp such profoundly baffling concepts. Her disturbingly keen ability to manipulate both her own relationships, and the relationships between others became apparent and undeniable when she entered school. Seeing her interact with her peers in a consistently conniving manner also alarmed me deeply; her overbearing bossiness and passive-aggressive behavior began to etch quite the chameleon into her fundamental traits – those that would be with her all of her life; those that make her who she is.
A blatantly dangerous impulsivity began to surge through her veins, all of the time – day and night; being the root cause of the evil that her choices started leave her holding in her lap. Her self-absorbed nature began to define the proverbial spoiled brat without consequence; the enabled, obnoxious and snot-nosed Shit from next door. Adults and children alike avoided interaction with her; they grew wary of her constant stream of shocking and destructive actions. Accountability or anything remotely similar to it is an issue that continues to stand, untouched and unacknowledged by her to this very day. My daughter seems to have always been unable to pay consequences for her own decisions and the effect that her choices might have on those around her.
The DFCS, as the legally bound entity charged with her “care”, has inarguably enabled this characteristic in my daughter’s perpetual self-denial; and has done so to a sickening degree.
The County Department of Family & Children’s Services entered the picture when Boo was almost out of sixth grade, upon her second release from John Muir Children’s Psychiatric Hospital within two weeks’ time. She had returned the second time for physically attacking my mother during one of her regular tantrums for not getting her way about something; only this time, she followed up by opting to kick her grandma in a healing surgical wound only several days post-op. I was at my wit’s second end by that point, and had exhausted any and all of the public resources available in the area of trying to find a working solution to the out-of-control behaviors of my child. My options ran out and I was forced, through the pits of desperation, to involve social services – as much for my own sake as for my daughter’s by that point in time.
I remember having days in which I would feel something very close to disdain for my only child because of her embarrassing, encompassing and incorrigible ways; I had many days spent thinking about how much better things may have been had I not given birth to this extremely defiant, highly unlikeable little creature and shit away so many thankless years in trying to correct her incredibly incorrect behaviors.
Life as a mother, for me – was pretty much a constant three-ring circus in Hell’s ghetto during the summertime: nowhere to cool off and wild, angry animals trying to bite your face off with every turn.
Once she had been court-ordered to residential “treatment” by the local juvenile court system, I actually felt like there was some substantial hope of a better future relationship between the two of us. Unfortunately, the way in which the courts are designed is severely flawed and perverse in its ability to safeguard parents such as myself: parents who were not the underlying purpose for the court’s involvement with the family.
This was where things first part of our case went awry, as a result of the incompetence associated with the shadiness of state and local child protection laws. I was unknowingly labeled incorrectly way back then, by those involved with the course of me and my child’s future, and never given a second thought after that point in regard such a mislabeling of my character and priorities.