I cry aloud to God, aloud to God, that he may hear me. In the day of my trouble I seek the Lord; in the night my hand is stretched out without wearying; my soul refuses to be comforted. (Psalm 77:1-2) ............................................ A journal chronicling my struggle as a woman, to find my way out of an abusive relationship, and to find myself again.

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Location: Georgia, United States

Saturday, August 07, 2004

Emily in jail

Yesterday was a hard day. Emily had her court date, stemming from her being gone all night a couple of months ago, at a hotel party. (See posts from 6/05 and 6/06) I had no idea where she was, and the last time she didn't come home, she ended up in Indianapolis. I had wanted to get her into an OTP (Outdoor Training Program) camp at that time a year and a half ago, but I was outnumbered by the rest of the family, and Emily ended up getting only probation, which was a joke. She never once saw a probation officer. Then Zada, who had wanted to take her in because she thought she'd change Emily and show herself to be such a better mother than I am, finally gave up and sent her back to us.

Anyway, the judge we saw yesterday was in no mood to play. She read off to Emily the previous charges she'd had against her -- 1) terroristic threats at school 2) battery for hitting me, and 3) runaway and unruly child, which was the same thing she was charged with this time. She also asked Emily a lot of hard questions about why she left without telling me the truth about where she was going, if there was drinking, drugs and sex at this party (yes, yes and yes) and whether or not Emily had participated in these things. When Emily said "no" the judge replied, "It must not have been much of a party for you then, was it?" She really didn't believe anything Emily said, and much as I do love Emily, I have to say I was with the judge on that.

Well, what it came down to was that Emily will be going to the OTP camp in Warm Springs, south of Atlanta, but since it may take 6-8 weeks for a spot to open up for her, she will be in a short-term program until a place comes open. BUT, as that may take as long as a week to get her into, and the judged considered Emily a flight risk, she was sending her to RYDC temporarily to make sure she doesn't run. RYDC is the Regional Youth Detention Center
-- in effect, jail, or prison, for juveniles.

Emily was extremely upset, as you can imagine, and very, very angry with me. I wanted so badly to hug her or just touch her, but she wouldn't let me, and then she was put in handcuffs and taken away. Oh my god, that was so difficult. I couldn't help crying.

Dale and I both have very conflicted feelings about all of this. On the one hand, an OTP camp has been something we've felt would be good for Emily for a long time, but on the other hand, it feels like a huge betrayal of our child. There is relief, and also a lot of guilt. There is much more peace in the house, but also the feeling of her missing.

I did get a call from Emily yesterday evening, just after all the paperwork was completed at RYDC and before she was put in with the rest of the kids. She is so strange! She sounded so upbeat, so childlike. "They brought me in in handcuffs and leg chains, Mom!" -- said in a voice that conveyed it was a majorly cool experience. She said she had eaten and that the food was "okay" and that they had given her blue jeans, a blue T-shirt, a sports bra, "and some really huge underwear!" We had been afraid that she wouldn't want to see us for visiting tomorrow, but when I asked her if she wanted us to come, she said "Sure!" God. Emily in a nutshell, almost.

Crap. Three years until the last of 7 kids is grown and possibly gone, and I've never had to deal with anything like this. It's all new, always new. I pray for boredom.

Other than that, I have been making tomato sauce and canning tomatoes, and that's a very enjoyable thing. Having a vehicle has made me feel more free than I have in a long time, and Bert has asked me to do a short 'something' for the PCG's commemoration of 9/11. It ain't all bad, but some days are just out of the realm of normality, and I hate those days.

And oh, yeah, I was invited to join Blog Sisters, a group of women bloggers.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The empty half of the glass is always at the top"

August 9, 2004 at 9:55 PM  
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November 2, 2005 at 8:53 PM  

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