Saturday, August 18, 2007

Maybe I Need a New Career

Okay, I lost that case Thursday. Well, really it was an emergency-type hearing. The big full evidentiary hearing is next week. So I had to prepare all the subpoenas yesterday. And know that my client had to deliver her 4 year old daughter for visitation with her felon father. It's killing me.

I was showering last night (big risk time for me). I found myself mad. I have spent the last several months mad at my own mother for not doing the right thing and standing up for me. For not fighting it in court. Then I have this case where the mother has done everything right. There was a prior offer for Dad to relinquish full custody in return for Mom convincing her sister to drop the r*** charges. Mom wouldn't do it. Said she wouldn't ask her sister to do that. Because Dad had all along threatened Sister that if she told about the r*** that he would make sure Mom never saw their daughter again. Mom felt like her Sister had already sacrificed herself by remaining silent for months trying to protect the little girl. Mom didn't want to ask her sister to do that any more. I so admired that.

So Mom followed the rules for her Sister. And followed the rules in filing for custody of her Daughter. My client isn't perfect. She's made mistakes. But she is a good mother and trying to play by the rules and seek justice through the court system. A system I'm supposed to work in and believe in. And it failed. It failed this Mom and this little girl.

So now I find myself thinking - so what if my mom didn't tell? Would it have mattered? My sister reported when she was 16 and all they did was drop it down to lewdness. What I don't understand is that Toilet got many months house arrest for lewdness. Had to move out of the house and no contact with Sister. But yet, this Dad has 1 month house arrest for a much more serious charge and gets visitation with his Daughter. I know it is a different state. But I don't understand.
I don't understand how this mother played by the rules and lost. And I participated in it.

I find myself second guessing every decision I made. I'm terrified of next week. What if I lose? I may need to get out of this profession. Anyone know of a job that pays well enough that I can pay off huge school loans?


Lynn said...

"I don't understand how this mother played by the rules and lost."

I understand it. 'The rules' that govern the lives of children are made by fearful adults. So many adults encountered some form of abuse or neglect at the hands of their parents or caregivers, but they refuse to see it. They are too busy protecting their parents and minimizing what was done to THEM. They can't be truthful and see the pain of the child without seeing their own and they have been taught to ignore that old pain and side with the parents.

I know you will do the best that you can, Enola.

keepers said...

we feel for you, what you are trying to do to help and then have it ignored by the law, we can only imagine what you are feeling. thinking of you

peace and blessings


Beautifuldreamer said...

Sometimes all we can do is what we know to be the right thing, regardless of the outcome. Many times right doesn't prevail, as was the case with this mother and child. You did what you could, and sometimes doing the right thing is our only consolation.

It must be disheartening to be in your line of work. Thank goodness there are people out there such as yourself who are willing to work through the legal system in an effort to bring forth justice.

Discouragement is bound to set in at times like this, no one could fault you for that! Just know that you're doing more good than you will probably ever know or see in this lifetime. I so admire you for that!