As the “Dark Side of the Year” quickly approaches, my ‘psychological overdrive’ kicks into ‘Beast Mode’ – every year now, without fail.The holidays are especially difficult for me these days – it was the holidays last year that prompted me to begin a blog here, as a matter of fact – the pain and emptiness has gotten nearly unbearable.
When I was still a Mom, I was no different from most: I obnoxiously over-decorated the house and dressed up in micro-detailed costumes for Halloween with Boo every year since I came home from the hospital when she was almost five. At Christmas, we ALWAYS went and picked out whichever tree she chose (even if it was terribly hard on the eyes for any being with aesthetic ability) before decking it out beyond recognition with the shiniest and near-blinding ornaments and tinsels…some of them even flashed or blinked, it was insane. I spent hours and hours each year wrapping up her fuckloads of presents and stocking stuffers with the girliest wrap I could find (typically, waaaay overpriced stuff that I had spent an arm and a leg on during one of her previous school fundraisers), and baked so many cookies and treats for class parties that I couldn’t even try to count all of the batches in and out of the oven.
Christmastime was when I would finally get to buy Boo things that I had socked cash away for since the prior holiday season; it was always a chance for me to see her happy, even if that happiness was in the temporary form of watching her gaggle over a gift she had opened, and loved. I don’t know…I guess the holidays were the only time that she and I were ever able to feel close enough to one another to let go of the trauma between us, that defined both of us somehow. She always openly missed her Father at Christmas; some of her ONLY existing memories of him are enveloped by the holiday season and everything that’s associated with it. I always told her stories about what he was doing where he was – the most despicable piles of bullshit that I have ever uttered to my daughter – I would tell her about the way “he missed her so much and planned to have her with him again for Christmas someday”, even if it was without me, I assured her that he wished she were there with him. I have no idea if she bought those stories or not, but at the time it was all I could come up with in response to her queries about him. I didn’t even know where he was for a few of those first conversations.
Anyway, yeah…well now days – I’m alone every year. My isolation over the holidays is mostly because I choose to be solo; I prefer to be alone in solitude for whatever reason to endure, as opposed to attending any of the meals or celebrations that I am invited to by various people who probably feel sorry for me. I won’t even spend my holidays with Jack the EMT anymore; I am the wettest of wet blankets during this season – can never wait for it to come and go so that I can begin to recover once more. It’s a recurring wound – a reinfection – a rip down the seam of my mending soul…I know the hollowness and sense of loss that bleeds the brightest, freshest blood from my heart this time of year will never cease to reappear with the Harvest Moon, despite my efforts to ignore Christmas lights and Halloween parties and New Year’s fireworks; I can lie to myself all I want and pretend those things don’t exist anymore, but that hasn’t worked thus far because here I am.
Americana and Boo
The next piece of this tragedy is one of the MOST UNBELIEVABLE aspects to the entire nightmare; it is the point in which everything slipped from my control permanently; the point in which I lost Boo forever – I was still too fucking blind to realize it.
I remember after taking her to the facility (I had already been arrested for not returning her when I said I would and been held in contempt of court orders etc.) and making certain that the pedophile would not be on shift, going to my parents’ house and unloading my fears and giving them a recap of the conversation with Boo.
Within an hour, I was sitting at my laptop, writing an email to the facility’s supervisor, director, clinical director, house manager, therapist and Boo’s case worker – describing the conversation and its details in full. I closed this email with the demand that: 1) the individual in question be separated from Boo totally until further notice, and 2) that my concerns were immediately addressed.
RED FLAG #1:
I heard nothing for 2 days; and when I did finally hear from my daughter’s therapist from the facility, it was to be informed of the sexual assault that had occurred the day before. (The sexual assault against my then 13 year old daughter, one executed by the VERY SAME MAN that I had sent warning about only 2 days prior.) The incident had taken place in between the time that I had emailed the warning and the time that I received a response, in the form of a “formal investigation” that was quickly deemed “unfounded” and dropped.
Boo had, like many, many child victims of sexual assault end up doing during the investigatory stage, recanted her initial allegation – she suddenly claimed that the person with whom she had sexual intercourse with over the previous weekend – had been a boy from school that she had supposedly snuck into the facility through her window; a story that I NEVER believed for a nano-second. My feeling has always been founded solidly that she was trying to protect him from being in trouble; and that she immediately experienced and saw the way in which the few people she had confided the truth in had reacted to her allegation of a grown-ass male employee having sex with a thirteen year old child “client” on grounds – and was essentially intimidated into changing her story (she now claims that this was an accurate assertion on my part).
RED FLAG #2:
EVERY SINGLE “professional” involved with my kid’s so-called “treatment” and “rehabilitation” was perfectly okay with accepting Boo’s sudden change of stories, without question or a second thought towards further investigation of what had the potential (and sadly, ending up becoming) a huge breach of the children’s safety – Boo was “Janey Doe AKA Victim #1 of 17, years later, in court documents that came way too late.
Secondly, the facility (nor a single one of its handfuls of legally mandated child abuse reporters) didn’t find it necessary to involve the local police, and wanted to handle things “internally” along with the concurrently running CPS “investigation”. The police would not have been brought into the scenario AT ALL, had Boo’s school principle (who was incoincidentally already a stationary figure in Boo’s middle school career) not taken his own role as a mandated reporter seriously, and reported my report to him – “out of legal liability to do so”.
RED FLAG #3:
Location! Location! Location!
Upon the allegation being made and the police finally being dragged into involvement, Boo was consequently asked to leave the facility within seven days of police involvement. Her social worker claimed that there wasn’t time to find a “placement” that was legally in-line with the court’s order regarding her specific treatments needs and goals – that the only option we had was to send Boo four hours north from home. Once again, the case DFCS omitted details as serious and life-changing as sexual assault and harassment against the very child it was claiming to protect and rehabilitate. Again, I had to get myself arrested in order to be heard by anybody who had any power (the judge). Unsurprisingly, the judge claimed no knowledge of the events unfolding outside the courtroom, despite the fact that she is technically my kid’s legal guardian while Boo’s on her caseload.
(Way to go with follow up!)
This blog has a collaborated patchwork of works by different writers from around WordPress, and the blog’s author has asked if she can feature a letter written to Boo on New Year’s Day of this year, a few days after she went missing again.
Today I have felt like the biggest failure of a mother possible…because I’ve been reflecting on the continual tragedies that have plagued my experience of motherhood…
I have been going through the archives of my daughter and I’s life together (and apart) and trying in vain (the only thing that I know to do) to make sense of such senselessness; to reason with the unreasonable. I feel resigned to the permanence of desperation and devastation today – I haven’t felt resigned for a while – not to this reality, at least. Accepting a reality of the life and future existence belonging to somebody other than me doesn’t feel at all “right”.
I’m somebody’s Mom…
but I’m no longer a Mom to anyone…
so I walk around feeling half-ass finished with my tasks each and every day – I can’t braid my daughter’s hair or paint her nails; I can’t buy her clothes and shoes that fit her comfortably (with a little room to grow into); I can’t cook her a meal or go through her phone – I can’t be her Mom because she’s out there being something meaningless to some heartless, shameless and most likely dangerous grown man who is just as likely to end her life when he’s finished with her, as he is to drop her off naked and shivering in the rain at a public bus-stop, in a state of sleep-deprived confusion and drug-induced delirium.
These are the types of people with whom she repeatedly chooses to keep the company of – as opposed to a warm, safe, consistent and nurturing – even semi-normal – life with me.
So, I live in a mind-fuck paradox in the land of Cause and Effect – when it comes to my kid and my mental stability (or lack, thereof)…
When she is around and accounted for, I can move mountains if I need to; when Boo is safe (no matter how pissed off she may be about having to be), I am able to be more productive and to maintain momentum like I swallowed a bottle Dexedrine, just begging someone to step up and take a shot at the Title, to try and slow me down.
But when Boo is missing; when my heart is out there walking around outside of my body in places unacceptable to me, I am virtually paralyzed and non-functional in general. It is impossible for me to carry on with day to day shit like everything’s ok, when it’s about as far from ok as it could fucking be… I’m a train wreck – no clarity, no security, no direction – on the verge of not-so-spontaneous combustion.
The lyrics to this song tell one of my very own stories –
the one to my Boo.
Every time I hear this song, I think, “Damn, this is SOOO my song to my daughter…”
Here’s to you, Boo – – – wherever you may be tonight. <B
IF YOU ARE A SOCIAL WORKER READING THIS POST (OR ANY OF MY BLOG FOR THAT MATTER):
Spare me your high and mighty remarks about the excellent jobs you all do in helping kids. The only effect that those posts ever have on me IS FAR from the one that you’re shooting for by defending the corruption within the terroristic agencies attached to the notion of child welfare. I don’t care who you are or what you’ve done. You’re ALL the same to me by now, tried and true Robots of the system.
Okay – So I’ve always been looked at as an “exception” to the unwritten, unspoken rule amongst the “professionals” of the dread Juvenile Court, the rule that proclaims any parent who comes through there is automatically 110% guilty and totally questionable in every aspect of life – until or unless the court becomes officially convinced otherwise. At the beginning stages of Juvenile Court proceedings, any misidentified (as an abusive) parent unfortunate enough to be included should prepare to spend a while being strung up from a tree under the scrutinizing microscope of the DFCS and juvenile judge.
The act of actually officially convincing the courts however, is yet, another obscured and confusing – almost childlike, in a fifth grade student council kinda way – element of the shadiest corner in the Superior Courts of every U.S. state. The people who operate these courts are a breed like no other: cold hearten and turned into creatures so artificial in existence, that the ability to achieve REM sleep on a regular basis does not evade them at all – EVER. Anyway, I have been tied to that hellhole of a courthouse for over five years now, and have maintained my “parental rights” on paper, which is nothing more than the right to be notified by the Department of Family & Children’s Services learns of her death or whereabouts before me; it’s just another safeguard in place for the social services case workers, court-appointed attorneys and other useless entities to cover their’ chicken shit asses after someone down the line fucks up and ruins a young life or two – but hey- shit happens, right? These people are mutants in the most raw form of mutation – these people are role players on stage – being paid to destroy lives and break apart struggling families through brute force of the most mysteriously veiled legal arena in existence.
Social workers and case workers have safeguards galore; immunity in court for the things that do or do not do for the kids who are forced to depend upon them for safety and security. In fact, the notion of immunity for all “professionals” of the child protection community seems to hover over the courthouse building like a veil of dark and deceitful mist.
Safeguards…what a joke if you are the natural parent of a child who becomes entangled with the system to any degree; because in this courthouse – Nationwide – the right hand doesn’t know what the left hand is doing; and nobody holds themselves or each other accountable for the many irreversible damages created by the social welfare system. Nope, on the contrary, these drones have been professionally trained to pull the ol’ ‘Look at the birdie’ decoy maneuver and redirect the fault toward the already overly-persecuted natural parent. This circumstance can easily become enough for even the most steadfast and stubborn of parents to lose their will in the faces of so much collective evil. And often, that is what happens to the pleasure of the courts. That way, they can adopt the kid out and earn the funds available for that process, which is a substantially larger amount that those available to the kids limbo-ed in foster care.
The circumstances as they were in our particular case, being that it had ALWAYS been the child (not the parent) in the situation, that was profiled in official court documents as being “high risk”, “mentally unstable and unpredictable”, “self-destructive and violent with the tendency to escalate to extremes”, my unusual legal standing as the natural and rightful parent to a ward of the court – was apparently quite rare. The uniqueness of our case was an element that I didn’t quite grasp until those absent ” legal safeguards” came into play a few years into my enslavement to the juvenile court who held my only child ransom – and technically still does. In the easy majority of cases heard, decided, and monitored through the Juvenile Courts, the legal parent or guardian of the child has been stripped of any and all rights pertaining to said child within the time frame 18 months, given the courts’ propensity to “terminate” parental rights alongside of the termination of what they refer to as “Reunification Services”. If the parent has not jumped perfectly through each and every hoop held out by the hand of the judge and DFCS (‘Department of Family & Children’s Services’, but I have altered it to ‘Devil-Faced Child Swallowers’), the odds of them being reunited with their kids in a legally acknowledged way are nearly obliterated then and there.
Because of Federal Government stipends and locally funded program incentives driven by the money-hungry notion of “permanency” ( in other words: a “permanent”, consistent place and a so-called family environment for children in foster care), the time frame for a parent to reunite with his or her own flesh and blood kin is now only 12 months long. And if you haven’t made the DFCS and judge happier than a fag in dick tree by then – your babies are as good as gone. Just like that.
I learned all about the complete LACK of these “safeguards” when my daughter was sexually assaulted and abused by a mental health support staff at who worked at the COURT-ORDERED treatment facility to which my little girl (then 11 years old) had been remanded.
Now, let us NOT forget the fact that she had been remanded there to begin with, due to her behavioral and social struggles – she was supposedly there to get better. When she was brave enough to tell on him, the response put forth by the collective of the “professionals” involved (including law enforcement, the ombudsman and the fucking city council) was despicable beyond words. They openly doubted her. They officially deemed her allegation as “unfounded”. They sent her to a different place…six fucking hours away from me! They isolated and alienated her during a serious trauma in her young and vulnerable life. I still strongly want someone’s head on a hotplate for that, and always will.
It was during that crucial and pivotal circumstance, that the very community entities that claim to protect the kids and their “best interests”, the DFCS and Juvenile Courts, blatantly and corruptly disregarded everything about my only child’s best interests in ANYTHING – past, present, future. It was then that my baby was destroyed and left alone to try and manage with so much doubt and betrayal by so many people with authority over her life.
Sickeningly, the pedophile remained on staff for three more years and continued his ways until another VERY YOUNG, and very brave cut-throat came forward and had an accusation so similar to the one made by my daughter years prior, that the notion was finally (but way too late for many kids) taken seriously and investigated.
The child predator in question now awaits trial on 27 counts of lewd and lascivious acts with a minor under he age of 14 years. He has plead not-guilty to each and every count.
His parasite lawyer intends to put a string of little girls who were victims to her pedophile client on the stand and smear each one somehow, to discredit them one at a time. I’d like 2 minutes alone in a room with that bitch.
In my case, all hoops has been satisfactorily jumped through in the eyes of judge, thank the Gods; because the case worker (who is always referred to as Shiva the Destroyer in my blog posts) on the hand – has had a raging hard on for me since my kid got sexually molested and mindfucked by a man who called himself a “counselor” on the county’s watch. Like it was MY fault that the industries of Child Protection, Mental Health and Welfare could care less about the kids in actuality.
…to be continued…
I took the pills. I needed to get some real sleep for a change. Sleeping pills have never been something I’ve been into, so the thought of popping a pill and being able to feel that tender yanking on my senses into slumber land has become intriguing lately, given the total lack of my only child’s whereabouts.
It’s hard to sleep under my current circumstances; and when I am able to drift off into the lair of my waking enemy, my visits are short-lived and bitterly laced with mental snapshots I’ve blocked out in the conscious moments during daylight.
To the mind of a non-practicing heroin addict, the inability to become truly sleepy is something akin to a foreign concept; because back when I was a practicing addict, the tried and true escapism, the accepted and sought after realm of the “Netherworlds”, known as sleep and slumber – shit, unconsciousness, for that matter – never managed to evade my habitual calls upon them. Incidentally, when I was strung-out on heroin, my existence (or lack, thereof) was in reverse from today in this respect: it used to be extremely and notoriously difficult to wake me up. I once slept through the first two days of broken jaw (the first and MOST painful of my broken jawbones). Thinking back, I can hardly even believe that was me – in any aspect of the situation, wow…
The pill – an anti-anxiety tablet from a zip-lock baggie my Shawnee Mommy forcefully punched into my fifth pocket the other day. This is my mother’s version of packing me my lunch before sending me on my way out into the big bad world, something she never got around to doing when an actual mom-made-packed-lunch might have made a difference somehow. The baggie was like a favor bag leftover from a Keith Richards & Stevie Nicks slumber party: Clonazepam, Seroquel, Alprazolam, Hydroxyzine, Trazodone, Valium, and of course my all-time favorite in plentiful amounts: Xanax.
I went with half of a Hydroxyzine; I just wanted to drift off to sleep for a change, I swear…
Within 45 minutes of popping the bitter, purple half-moon, I was clicking through photos from a long-ago burned CD-R filled with the lives of me and my only child – from her beloved infancy and toddlerhood all the way up to a few ugly years ago.
It was during this time that the guilt reared its familiarly hideous head out of the CD-R, and commenced to swallowing me whole. I could no longer even see the images on the screen; a foggy, tear-embedded haze had redesigned the room and everything in it. Despite eating the half-pill that supposedly helps with anxiety and is praised by my most high-strung of acquaintances, my heart was thumping so painfully in my chest that I got angry. Yeah…get mad dumbass – get that adrenaline in on this too, that’ll help a lot.
My emotions affected by seeing my daughter’s little baby face at age 6 months or one year old – her wild bright blonde hair all over the place, her hauntingly unchanged green-brown doe eyes, her O-shaped little mouth – her innocence and promise and chances in life seemingly hovering over her in each photo I looked at – were absolutely consuming in every nano-ounce of my being. Anyway, I learned last night, that sleeping pills aren’t my answer to the perpetually perplexing equation at of my life, either. I guess my backyard MacGyver laboratory lives on nocturnally, for now. DISCLAIMER: I don’t really have a laboratory and I don’t really make bombs, it’s totally symbolic when I make these remarks on my blog. I’d be lying if I said that the thought of slapping one into my camel pack instead of the water pouch and paying a visit to my daughter’s case worker over at the Department‘s Headquarters isn’t a daily fantasy of mine. I have truly become a hateful and calculating individual – a coiled up mother snake just waiting for my moment to strike, and strike lethally. I have enabled this through my PTSD and its overall grip on my concept of everything.
I have times when the reality that I have put upon my daughter is too much to bear for me; too much to accept, to swallow down and move on. I’m having one of those times today, likely due to the drug-induced guiltfest that I threw for myself last night in the attempt to get some sleep for a change.
Another. Lesson. Learned.
I just got the call that has been Déjà vu’d into my existence like some horror-esque Groundhog Day – my daughter has gone missing from the private hospital in which she has been recovery from her last disappearance; she has opted to leave once again by her own free will. And just like that, she’s gone into the unknown (and known to a terrifying degree) without a trace or a second thought about her own safety or livelihood. She doesn’t understand the mathematics of her situation, the power of equation – probability and finite conclusions.
I am old enough to know that we are each going through life as a dollar bill in the pocket of a manic gambler in a casino, drink in hand; we will play anywhere from one to a bazillion times before we run out of luck and are gone to the masses of dollar bills inside the machine that was the swallower of the gambler hopes and dreams. I am able to recognize the fact that the odds are already stacked against this situation; and with the gambler carelessly spinning wheel of chance time and again, her odds are quickly thinning. I can see how the mathematics of probability declare the eventuality of her luck running out and the wheel stopping at a very unhappy ending.
I’ve told her this, I have explained that one day, she is going to hitch a ride with the WRONG man and she will lose the ability to decide when and how to come home again when she’s ready; I’ve told her that she is gambling with her very life when she impulsively disappears from sanity like this…she doesn’t care.
I knew it was just a matter of time before I received a call from yet another detective on a newly filed missing person’s case on my only child; and I know it’s just a matter of time before other horrible calls come at the rate my daughter is at with her self-worth in the world. It baffles me, truly…I don’t really do the praying thing but anyone out there who does please pray for my daughter’s safety in the days to come.
Damn it, these are the days when surviving is the most depressing thing that I’ve done for myself.
I awoke this morning, chilled by the residual sweat of a nightmare…saturated by a deepened fear for your safety; trapped within the confines of a place I’ve long-anticipated on a sub-conscious level that’s only obvious to me now that I’m here. I don’t know how many New Years I’ve spent uneasy over you – over what’s happened to you in your life that’s molded you into someone so hollow – so empty myself, as a result of such emptiness. Today, New Year’s Day 2014, I awoke cursing the succession of time and the science of space; I woke up fearing the year ahead’s events as much as I had gone to sleep hating those of last year. I predict a lot of me, in fear for your very livelihood from one day to the next; I foresee plenty of hopeless nights defined by worry and dread – the growing anxiety being attached to the sound of my cell phone ringing. I predict myself desperately burying my heels into the increasingly fickle ball of hope that has lost its warmth and begun to fizzle. After our tearful and emotionally turbulent Thanksgiving, I had no lingering doubts about your plans to run again if you pulled off a visit home for Christmas, and I knew that you had zero intentions of ever going back there, if you ran.
I was, and am now – still somehow hoping beyond hope that you will be miraculously struck by a bolt of reason and reconsider; your naivety terrifies me. Anybody who knows me at all knows exactly what it is that eats me up inside with every moment that goes by without you accounted for: FEAR. I innately brood over your well-being with every single breath that I take; I make offerings to the dimming ball of hope in my heart that you’ll ever come home again. I can’t help but to share with you, how very grim and unwelcome the year ahead feels to me today, without your presence to light the dark paths shooting out in every direction from my tired feet. I hope from the bottom of my being – that wherever you are on this New Year’s Day, you’re safe and warm with food in your belly and shiny nail polish on your fingertips, that you’re smile is busy in blessing the crowd that surrounds you with its unmatched brightness – I hope that you’re not afraid anymore, that you been empowered and feel strong in the place that you’ve chosen to run away to. I hope that somehow, some way – for this year ahead, more than anything else – I hope you know that I love you, Boo…that’s one thing that’s always renewed by hope and stays unchanged forever. I’m so very worried about you; I hope you come home soon.