I do have to confess that I injured poor Ethel. Last Monday I slammed the car door on her hand and busted open her finger. It bleed EVERYWHERE. I have no idea why she puts up with me, I swear. Poor girl! Go ahead, I deserve a small amount of verbal flogging for being a klutz!
Also last week I met with our GAL - I shall call her Dr. Britt. Not because she's British mind you, but because it sort of relates to her name and she is a Dr of the PhD variety...and I just kinda dig it. So Dr. Britt and I get together via phone the final week in October. I had sent in 1/2 of the required payment to her and hadn't heard anything, so I called and introduced myself. We had a short, but pleasant conversation and she forwarded some paperwork onto me by email. I filled in out within 24 hours and emailed it back to her. I followed up a few days later with an email letting her know when to expect the final half of the payment. Shortly there after my X's evil lawyer calls and accuses me of standing in the way of the reunification process and actually said, "My client has behaved PERFECTLY and your client is obstructing his attempts at establishing visitation by refusing to work with the GAL. She better get into compliance immediately or... insert random scary legal threats here" So my lawyer contacted Dr. Britt and asked if I had been in contact and where we were in the process. Dr. Britt replied via email that at that time I was the only one she had heard from, I was the only one who had completed my parenting worksheet, and I was the only one who had paid. SO SUCK THAT YOU "PERFECTLY BEHAVED" JACK WAGON! grrrr... sorry for the anger there, but jeez I hate being accused of standing in the way or being somehow responsible for his failures. I don't need to stand in his way - he does a good enough job of screwing up on all his crazy own!
Well last week it was time for our face-to-face meeting. It was nice to hear before hand that Dr. Britt realized this wasn't about me at all, and that interviewing me and meeting with the kids was just a formality - and that her primary job is to establish what my X's mental condition is currently and what kind of therapy, DV treatment, and possible parenting classes he will have to submit to prior to establishing some kind of reunification plan and monitored visitation set up. So we met for two hours and discussed my history with my ex, our current living situation and how the kids are doing. We talked a bit about my plans for the future, and what I would need to see from the X in order to feel safe. It was a really good meeting. It felt amazing to hear her say that she thinks I'm a good mom, and that I'm doing a good job.
Lots of stuff going on this week as well. I'm heading to court on Thursday to try and get the kid's Restraining Order renewed against the X. He is, of course, fighting it - so there have been legal shenanigans a plenty from his camp. That's a whole post all on it's own. The amount of absolute bull crap being flung over the fence from Capt. Crazy and his team of Legal Hooligans is freaking amazing. Blatant, and bold lies even when we've presented the court with proof otherwise - and he clings to those crazy stories for all he's worth. It's just laughable to some extent - but scary too. I think he actually believes his own lies. He's convinced himself really and truly that he's some kind of victim of the system and an evil ex wife who masterfully has manipulated police, judges, lawyers, therapists, and the family court system to screw him over. None of this guarantees that I'll get my motion passed and get a 3rd restraining order though - so I'm trying not to focus on the "what if" scenarios too much or I'll devolve into a blubbering pile of anxiety and stress.
This week is also my birthday. I'm somewhere past 35 now and not yet 40. It's pretty hideous actually, and I plan on ignoring the day as much as possible. Although my wonderful parents did bless me with the gift of a shiny new 12 quart, restaurant quality stock pot. I'm stoked to make some home made chili or maybe chicken and dumplings for everyone soon!
Also this week are four parent/teacher conferences, and lots of kid "stuff" going on. I think I need a vacation people!