Thursday, March 26, 2015

An unexpected update....

We have entered this strange, foreign place where my son and I communicate with each other. He lets me know when he needs things and when he does, I provide the things he needs. I am humbled at the workings of the Universe and how it has brought us to this place, even though I am sad that he had to experience getting rejected by his grandmother in order to get here, but I'll take it since that was going to happen eventually anyway.

I haven't updated in a while, life has a way of keeping me busy. But basically the police located my son at school (thank goodness he kept GOING to school even though he had run away) and the school deputy held him there after school one day until I could get there. The deputy was basically giving him a reality check on what things I could do (as in, remove him immediately, never to return) and that I seemed like I was trying to be reasonable so he suggested that my son work with me if he wanted any chance to stay where he was.

Not to say that boarding schools didn't enter my mind, they most certainly did. I have a seven year old at home to consider as well, and I can't have a teenager demonstrating how to climb out windows if I can help it. I've already had to explain that once. So yeah, boarding school was an option I considered. To the point where I was googling different ones and even called and spoke to a few. But he WAS still going to school, and he did still have an A in ROTC (though not in much else) and I was hesitant to be too disruptive since I know that all of his adult career goals involve the military. I decided to extend the first olive branch, mainly because I realized he had ROTC drill that day and he would miss it if I dragged him away. I asked him in front of the officer if I could trust him to come with me if I came back after drill. At first he said no, but he did change his mind and give me his word that he would go with me. Surprisingly when I came back, he DID. With no complaining or anything. In fact, he gave me an apology for his previous behavior as soon as he got in my car.

We just grabbed some dinner and kind of got caught up on things. After dinner I met the parents of the friend he had chosen to stay with. I actually slightly knew the mom from ROTC booster meetings and I recognized her son as one of the harder working cadets. After learning more about the schedule my son was living there,  and after double checking on the school website and realizing that my son's Missing Assignment list had stopped growing (at 37 missed assignments) pretty much as soon as he moved in there, I decided it could be beneficial to leave him there at least temporarily while he and I took some time to reconnect after the years of alienation and bullshit we have both been through. 

As time has passed I am more satisfied with my decision, as my son has remained polite and respectful and has done pretty much anything I ask of him and then some.  He seems to be coming around to seeing/believing more of who I actually am, as opposed to who he was told I was.  I have experienced the simple joy of him living in a house where the adult he stays with communicates with me about his needs. I was able to get him some clothes when it was cold, and some follow up doctor appointments since he had apparently been diagnosed with scoliosis (which again, his custodial grandmother did not feel it had been important to share this information with me) I am very glad he took it upon himself to tell me because I really dislike the idea of him going without anything he needs. I also think it gave me a chance to show him that I do care about him. I wonder if he'll ever realize that he has been on my insurance all this time while she has been using only the medicaid coverage that she has for him and letting him go without some things because she didn't want to just LET ME KNOW what was going on because she didn't want me to be able to help. 

It's not easy.  The torture was dragged out for five years. I still struggle with just trusting what is said at face value. I'm sure he is still struggling with this too, because I am an adult and the thoughts still creep in. In two years he will be a legal adult and could stop talking to me completely if he chooses to. I hope he doesn't, but I can't control or worry about that.  I'm too busy being happy about his turnaround.  I had honestly gotten to a point where I doubted he would ever come around. For years I have parroted the things the therapists told me to say when he is disrespectful in email/text and felt SO ridiculously stupid at times while I was doing it. Like, this isn't going to work, he just thinks I'm an idiot.

And I must say; I was wrong.  I'm happy that I was, and that I said all the stuff even though I felt stupid. It totally was working I just couldn't tell at the time. So many times I wanted to say screw it and just say exactly how things were making ME feel......and instead I just took a deep breath and practiced what I learned in therapy and said I love and miss you regardless of how you feel about me and I wish you well and hope that one day you can know that and I'll be right here when you do. 
And suddenly now he's here....reaching out to me, having ordinary conversations.  It's just so different.

In the end, as through all of it, I know that I have done all that I can possibly do to give him the best chance at being a successful adult.  I know it was twisted to him for years that my motives for fighting for him were purely selfish but I hope in time he will see the sacrifices I have made that make that theory impossible. 

As the dust settles and the chaos is behind us, I have a bit more time and can focus more on being a voice to make sure that this isn't allowed to keep happening to other parents. The length of litigation, the inaction by the court, the irreparable damages done to both myself, my son, and even to my mother and the rest of our family that was affected…..none of it is ok and there should be some kind of system in place checking to make sure that it isn't happening. There should be accountability after the sheer volume of hearings and cancellations/continuations that I experienced, and that I am certain other parents have experienced (because in my journey I have met a few other victims of Seminole County Family Court). 

No comments:

Post a Comment