Me: Who’s there?
Indy: Indy! *giggle*
lol That’s what a fair amount of my weekend sounded like. 🙂 I love that little Indy thinks I’m her joined-at-the-hip playmate, but I think I’ll enjoy it more when she understands how the knock-knock joke works. lol
I haven’t posted because things have been far too insane.
Last week, Dave, Paladin and I took Brian to town to arrange for deferments for several of his payments because of the cut in his VA benefits which began immediately despite the letter the VA sent stating that it wouldn’t start until June. When we brought Brian home, we discovered that the Sheriff’s department was looking for Manjina and had 2 warrants out for him stemming from unpaid child support. As we were getting ready to leave for the day, Manjina called from the jail. Earlier that morning, I had told his on-again, off-again girlfriend where he would be, and Brian, who doesn’t care for her much, automatically assumed she had tipped off the cops. Brian’s stepbrother, current owner of Brian’s residence, made it clear that Manjina would not be allowed back in the residence, and by the next day his stepbrother began clearing out the property. The day before this happened Brian had asked me about Paladin’s offer to have him move in with us, and I assured him that it was still on the table. After Manjina’s incarceration, Brian has decided to go ahead and take us up on our offer. So, this week we will be starting the renovations to make our home handicap accessible. In the middle of all of this, my head supervisor out of Shreveport came through to go over Brian’s Plan of Care and we explained the situation to her; she assured us that its not a problem for Brian to live with us and that my job will not be affected.
As for who tipped off the po-po, Manjina’s girlfriend has been pulling every string she can to try to get him out, and at one point Brian turned to me and said, “I don’t know if it’s love, but she’s killing herself working for him.” I reminded him that I like her. She’s a hard worker and a go-getter and she pushes Manjina to do what he needs to do. She’s a good woman. As for the tipster…my bet is on Mar. I think Mar thought it would be the prime opportunity for her to worm her way in here. Her reaction to the “surprising news” was also very suspicious as in she wasn’t surprised at all and seemed to be fishing to see if anyone knew how they’d found Manjina. Hmmm… I’m guessing it’s killing her that Brian will be moving far away from here. Or should that be “far away from her”?
So, probably before June 1st, I will be living at the Deridder house full-time. The good news about that is I will be able to be online a lot more! w00t! I seriously miss being here, and I miss it even more now that more than half of my local girlfriends have left Ft. Polk. It’s unfortunate, but it’s the nature of living near an Army base. 😦 Girl’s Night hadn’t been the same since the men had come back from Iraq, but at least we still got to see each other. Now, nearly all of them have been reassigned to different bases around the world. Our last Girl’s Night was poorly attended, but I was really there to see Rachel and the kids before they left for Missouri. We spent over an hour in the parking lot hugging and laughing. Dave and Will came by while we were outside and Rachel had to go joke with them for about 20 minutes. I guess I’m going to have to get over my aversion to using my Facebook and Myspace accounts because like many young people that’s Rachel’s favorite way of staying in touch. *sigh* And, yeah, I know I sounded totally old saying that. *crotchety old lady voice* You little whipper-snappers get off my lawn!
I truly appreciate your suggestions concerning our custody issues. I took them to heart and have spent two days going over my personal correspondence and the blog in order to piece together a log of our custody issues. Of course, this was partially spurred by more ugliness over the weekend.
We had a lot of things happen over the last week and over the weekend with Mull. After she kept the children from going to the zoo with us, we decided to keep the children over Spring Break but only on our terms. As it turned out, she refused any contact with us over Spring Break.
By Thursday night, Paladin prepared for war and when he contacted Mull to pick the kids up for his regular visitation, he was prepared to tell her that if she tried to prevent his visitation that the police would become involved. Fortunately, Mull eagerly agreed to the schedule and he didn’t have to make that threat. I’m guessing that hanging out with five kids wasn’t her boyfriend’s idea of a good vacation especially since he turned 26 on that Friday according to the kids (Mull is 35). Hey, I guess even a blind guy notices five kids after spending a week with them. Can’t keep them quiet forever. The duct tape glue wears loose.
Friday night was pretty quiet really. Blondie had a headache, but she recovered after a small dose of children’s ibuprofen was put down her. We blindfolded Bell and brought her into her party room (soon to be Brian’s studio) to give her our family gifts while Tina, Dave, and Will were there. She got a ton of Goth accessories from Tina & my family, a glam Goth bracelet from me, and a tiger print mini-skirt from Paladin along with a pair of shoes to replace her extremely worn-out favorite flats. She loved it all and the room. I had taken the blue Christmas lights I had bought for the wedding (50 cents each at after Christmas sales…I’m planning to use them to light the trees in the back yard for that fairy effect) and lined the entire room in them. I took one set and wrote her name on one wall in lights. We borrowed Brian’s 32 inch flat screen tv for the party which turned out to be a great blessing. The original party was meant to be a “water” party because they had so much fun playing with the water balloons at the BBQ that Bell wanted to do that for her birthday too. But it POURED the rain all weekend long. Instead, I had about a dozen Goth kids in one room. When we weren’t looking they went out and ran in the rain. When we got them back inside they played Twister and then watched bad horror flicks (“American Zombie”, I want that hour of my life back!). It was probably all for the best because I ended up being the party overseer all by myself.
Before the party, Savvy complained of an earache twice. I was pretty sure she was just seeking attention, but to be safe I insisted she take some ibuprofen and lie down. When she didn’t make too much of a fuss about it, I figured it was better to be safe than sorry. I told Paladin to take her to the ER and I’d hold down the fort. He got back just before the party ended. As it turned out, she did not have an ear infection. It’s likely that she agreed to lie down because she relishes the extra attention. But, the doctor did say she had an upper respiratory infection (aka a common cold) and possible allergies and the doc prescribed Motrin and a nasal spray but decided that an anti-biotic wasn’t necessary.
As usual, we learned a lot of little tidbits from the kids. Bell told us that Blondie and Savvy have both begun wetting the bed at Mull’s, but we’ve been checking their beds and they’re staying dry here. That seriously worries me. Bed wetting can be a sign of anxiety in young children. But, I also wouldn’t be surprised if there was some sleep apnea involved because these children snore loudly. Still, it doesn’t explain why they are bed wetting at home and not here.
Then, while making pancakes for breakfast on Saturday, Blondie piped up and said, “Mom never makes us breakfast!” They had been at home all week for Spring Break and I asked them what they’d been eating. They told me they “put peanut butter on bread” and Blondie said “I get salami out of the fridge.” Ask me how pissed I was! All five of these children have had a hot breakfast EVERY single day they have been with us at the Deridder house except ONE morning when they asked for some of my cold cereal. So I said, “But Mom gets up and takes care of you right?” Blondie and Savvy were both answering back and forth and it went something like this: “Mom is sleepy.” “Bell is supposed to take care of us.” So I asked them, “What about Indy?” They told me that Indy doesn’t sleep in Mom’s room anymore; she sleeps in the living room or in their bed. So I said, “But what about when you go to school?” They answered that “Mom leaves her door open so she can hear Indy.” If I was pissed before, just guess what I was thinking by the end of that conversation! This kind of stuff kept coming up all weekend and HELL YES I MADE NOTES! We knew Bell was bearing the brunt of the parenting at Mull’s but we had no idea how much. The next morning I was talking about Indy’s need to be potty trained (she’s beyond ready…she tells you when she needs to go and gets on the toilet by herself) when Bell told me that Mull has been having Indy wear the panties I sent home with them but she’s doing it to save diaper money. Then Bell complained, “but then I have to take her to the bathroom every few minutes.” Not much of a life for a 16 yr. old. I too was a parent figure at that age, and although I took a lot of pride in it, I also didn’t have to care for 3 kids under the age of 8.
Things just seem to be quickly going down hill with Mull. The girl’s new underwear is still missing a MONTH after I sent them home with them and Mull just says she doesn’t know where they are and they’re still showing up with the same 3 pair of stained underwear they’ve been wearing for the last 6 months. Four months after she first mentioned it, Savvy’s hearing aids still have not been fixed, and it’s a Tricare service; it doesn’t cost her a single DIME! Poor Savvy keeps showing us her cavity, which is getting much deeper, and asking us to make a dentist appointment for her, and when we talk to Mull about it, she says, “It’s costs too much.” When Paladin offers to pay the co-pay for it (about $150 according to Mull…Savvy also pointed to the new NintendoDSi commercial and told me that “Mom has that”…Walmart.com has the game for $199…I guess her toy is more important than Savvy gumming her food), she counters with, “It takes months to get an appointment.” Bull! Pure BULL! I called the dentist’s office myself yesterday and they had appointments for after-school for 3 days this week and assured me that they didn’t have to hold treatment for Tricare participants. I knew that before I called the dentist (so does Mull…she’s used them before), but I wanted to double check and to make a note of it in the Custody Log. Mull also sent Savvy back with her Easter dress shoes because according to Savvy, “Mom says they’re too big and they look ugly with socks.” So Savvy wasn’t allowed to wear her shoes with her Easter dress, and since I haven’t seen these kids in a single dress shoe, I’m guessing she went in her dirty sneakers. For the record, when Savvy tried the shoes on they were a bit loose, but the smaller size was too tight and since I’d just bought her new socks I had told her she could wear them with the socks. Martian has his own issues and Saturday he had to be forced to take a bath (he admitted that he hadn’t had a shower since Wednesday) and later that weekend he mentioned to Paladin that Mull had used a “wooden spoon” in regards to discipline but we never got the full story. Frankly, things just got deeper as if a bad mothering hurricane was tearing through this week.
Saturday morning while I was cleaning up breakfast, Paladin and I found out that the little girls didn’t know about the divorce. I guess telling your kids something like that just isn’t necessary in Mull’s book. So we spent about 5 minutes explaining what it was and that it wasn’t a big deal and that nothing was changing from the way it was right now. It didn’t seem to phase them at all and I was glad of that. All they’ve been saying for months is that “Dad left” and I constantly correct them. When asked, they know that “Mom took us to the hotel.” I really HATE that Mull tells these kids that their father left them when it is the most untrue thing in the world. He’s done everything he could to be there for them all along including asking Mull to come back knowing she was pregnant with yet another child that wasn’t his.
Just when I thought the day couldn’t get any longer, Saturday, after Bell’s party, we put the Borrowed Girls to bed in their room. Begin the saga! It’s been going the same way at least one night out of every visit for the last 2 months: Savvy goes to sleep with no trouble at all. About 1am, Savvy starts coming into our room and continues to do so every hour for the rest of the night until I give up and sit in her bedroom and make her keep her head on her pillow. After that, she’s dead to the world. So, it’s not that she’s not sleepy; she just seems to wake up and wants to be up wandering around. I thought maybe she was afraid of the dark, and she has used that as an excuse but she has a different reason for wanting to be up every time. To cut her off at the pass, we had put up blinds with curtains over top of them, we’d put in a nightlight (which was useless because there’s so much light from the porch and street light that you can barely see it), and we’d given Savvy a flashlight. All of it was useless. The next morning I found out why. Bell told us that Savvy has been doing this at Mull’s too. She goes into Mull’s room and Mull tells her to go get in bed with Bell (we make her stay in her own bed). According to Bell, when Savvy goes to school she tells the teachers that she’s ‘sick’ but what she really means is that she’s sleepy. Because of school policy, they send Savvy home and Mull let’s her sleep on the sofa. Bell says that this has become a habit with them. Because Savvy is being counted at attendance in the morning, she’s not on the absent rolls, but she is missing school. So, later this week (Paladin has appointments today and tomorrow), Paladin is going to stop by their schools and find out the in’s and out’s of what’s going on with ALL of the school-age children (we already know that Marvin has missed all the school days that he can). Mother of the year, I tell ya…
Sunday wasn’t that bad. I put Savvy on punishment because during her night tirade she had woke both Blondie and Indy by screaming that she didn’t want to stay in bed and had taken apart Indy’s sippy cup. I made her write 30 lines saying “I will stay in my bed all night and I will not wake up other people at night”, and I wouldn’t let her play on the computer at all. When she complained, I told her that the punishment was for our house and that she could ask Mom if she could play on the computer when she got back to Mull’s trailer park. She replied, “But Mom’s always on the computer; she doesn’t let us use it.” Boy, that picture just keeps getting clearer, don’t it?
I wouldn’t bank on Mull being off the computer any time soon, Savvy. When Mull showed up to pick the kids up on Sunday evening, she pulled out the b**ch fit card. Paladin came inside all flustered asking me about these imitation-Lego blocks that Mull sends with the kids sometimes. I told him that they hadn’t brought them. He looked anyhow, but they just weren’t there. He went out and told Mull that if we found them, that we’d bring them to her. Mull told him that she wanted those blocks and she wasn’t leaving until she got them. He came back to look again, and I started getting hot under the damned collar let me tell ya. Like I’m hiding children’s blocks! That’s right! I plan to retire on selling used $20 bags of imitation Legos, b**ch! He looked again and still no blocks. This time when he went out she made the teenagers get out of the van to go look for them. I stayed in the house because if I’d went outside I’d have a cut a b**ch fo sho! I sent him outside and told him to go take up the laundry list of crap she needed to address (all that stuff up top there) and I’d help the teens look. Sanjaya2 was with them and he said, “She seems to have had a really bad day today.” That’s about the nastiest thing that boy has probably EVER said in his life; he’s that sweet. I replied, “I’ll bet.” By the time, the kids came back out, she was more than ready to leave because she ducks any discussion of her parenting like Willie Nelson tries to outrun the IRS. The long and short of the block epic is that 20 minutes later when Paladin called the kids had found them sitting in their bedroom the entire time. Hand to God, if I’d went outside, the cops would have been called. I wanted to call them immediately but Paladin doesn’t want to have to go there until there’s no other choice.
My best guess on Mull’s meltdown? I’m guessing that a week spent with five kids in a trailer makes it very clear to a 26 yr. old blind guy that EVEN HE CAN DO BETTER. Since she drives him back to college every Sunday before she picks up the kids, I’m guessing that Mull and Jeremy either fought or broke up. I hope for his sake it was the latter. Either way, I’m guessing she will be online hunting for another baby daddy line up this week. Mull likes to hedge her bets. In her line of work, you have to.
At any rate, that’s my life of the past week or so. Crazy. Just pure crazy. Tomorrow night, we’re sending the Custody Log to Paladin’s Dad who works in child support enforcement in Oregon. I don’t know if all of this stuff is enough to get Child Services involved, and we want his opinion and that of his contacts. We’re also taking copies of it into Paladin’s lawyer and pushing him to get off his ass or we’re going to have to get a new ambulance chaser. We also have to start the renovations on Thursday. It’s all too complicated and it barely leaves me enough time to scratch my ass much less get online. I have pics waiting to be posted, but I have to get my software reloaded on the computer at work. We’ll see how much of a slave driver Paladin is this weekend. Maybe I’ll get to be online at home! 🙂
*sigh* Try not to forget me. I won’t forget you. I’ll be around when I can and in a few weeks, we’ll be together again. 😉
P.S.- Maricel, point taken. I haven’t updated my About Me page and I so totally have put that on the list. Of course it’s number 195 on the list. So, it may be a while…
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