I’m a fighter, always have been. I remember beating up a kid twice my size once because he was picking on my brother with Down’s Syndrome. NOBODY picked on my little brother. I remember knocking my older brother out cold by hitting him over the head with my snowmobile helmet as he walked out the door of our cabin just ahead of me…I wish I could remember why I was so mad…all I remember now about it is the fact that it’s a good thing there was a tree right out side the door to catch him as he fell. And that I didn’t get to ride for the entire weekend…asshole…yes it’s HIS fault. If he hadn’t upset me I wouldn’t have had to hit him over the head, if I hadn’t hit him over the head I’d have spent my weekend on my sled…boys are dumb.
I fought for Bum when the doctors told us he was a non-viable pregnancy. When they reclassified his status to inevitable abortion (don’t you love medical terms) I kept fighting. I never gave up. My non-viable pregnancy starts kindergarten this fall and will be six in November…TAKE THAT medical world…take that.
Now…I am fighting my children’s futures. I see myself as the only hope they have at a chance for a happy, well adjusted life (stop laughing, this is serious). My entire being knows that for them to have a fair chance at a productive life they need to be free to express themselves. They need to be able to love both parents openly and completely. They need security, stability, and structure.
I am struggling with my lawyer at the moment. He has advised me that our judge is a loose cannon and that he cannot trust the judge as far as he can spit (yes, those are my attorney’s actual words). He is encouraging me to settle with EH. His offer is that although we ‘share’ custody, the boys live with him full time for the school year and I have them every other weekend and for them to live with me from one week after school lets out until the week before school starts again with him having every other weekend during the summer.
My lawyer sent this to me and told me I’d better think about a 50/50 custody split due to the reasons regarding the judge I stated above. The problem with this is that it is not possible with where I live to even offer 50/50 as I live 22 miles from where he proposes the children go to school.
I told my lawyer that this was not an option because of logistics unless I move. The mere thought of moving back to the town where EH has spent a fair amount of time vilifying me is causing a stress I cannot even put into words.
My lawyer emailed me back saying I was risking losing custody if I went forward and that he would not recommend it.
So now what am I supposed to do?
How does a mother lose her children when there is no history of abuse, she has been a licensed foster parent in the past, she has been a licensed nurse, has had a stable job for the last year and a half, does not drink, smoke, or use illicit drugs…SOMEBODY PLEASE EXPLAIN THIS TO ME?
Dad, on the other had, has been removed from the house THREE TIMES in the last year for violent behavior, abuses alcohol, and has had 17 jobs in 13 years, continually sabotages the relationship between the boys and their mother, and allows family and caregivers to encourage a lack of contact with their mom.
I cannot walk out on my kids, I MUST fight for what I believe in my heart is right for them. I MUST. I know with every ounce of my soul that they belong in my care fulltime.
The question I have is, if my lawyer is saying to give in, how much do I put myself through to fight for these babies? How much do I allow myself to be raked over the coals and thrown under the bus. How much more can I take? And if I do fight…will my lawyer be invested enough to present a strong case? As a Legal Aid client I understand he is paid less than well…but my kids should not have to pay the cost for me not being able to afford a high priced attorney.
I’d greatly appreciate any and all feedback on this one…I’m struggling to find my feet.