December 17, 2008

Escaping Reality

We're goat sitting through Christmas break for some friends of ours. They live only about 5minutes from us, but honestly, it feels like a whole 'nother world over there. They found a lovely little house that sits on a private lake, and is fully enveloped in tress.

It's heaven!

We love going over there. It's like a little retreat. An escape. You drive up the very hidden driveway, surrounded by trees, and instantly all the stresses of the day seem to melt away.

They told us we are more then welcome to stay there the entire time they're gone if we'd like, and actually, we just may take them up on that!!

We got the blood work results back. Larson's levels are absolutely spot on, no deficiencies whatsoever!!!! And since he was the one this report alleged was malnourished - well, is it absolutely clear now that the report was filed simply out of hateful spite?!?? Both Rylan and Owen are ever so slightly anemic (really, very very slightly - just a point and a half off for both of them). The Dr wasn't concerned in the least. Anemia is not at all uncommon in younger children (even the meat eating ones, lol). The younger a kid is, the more likely they are to be picky about their food, hence, not getting as much of a certain vitamin as an older sibling may be getting. She told us it's nothing to worry about right now because both of their numbers are SO close to the "normal" range, most likely they'll outgrow it as they get older. There are many raw foods that are loaded with iron, and several of them both of the kids really like, so I'll just give them each an extra helping of those things, and I'm sure we'll be good to go. :-D

Even though I knew my children were all healthy, this whole situation had me SOOOO stressed out, so it is SUCH a relief to know the results!

Still no word from our caseworker!

Still unsure whether or not this drs physical, along with the bloodwork results, will be sufficient enough for dss.

Still not sure when this mess will be over.

So, yes, I think we will spend atleast a few days over at our friends peaceful sanctuary. Unwind, de-stress, and have some much needed quality bonding time with my family ... reading books, walking through the trees, going on the boat, having a bon fire! Ahhhhhh

And I LOVE LOVE LOVE goats!!! I've wanted my own goats for YEARS now, but we've never been anywhere with enough room. So, this will be a treat. Woot!

December 16, 2008

Is there an end in sight?!

My birthday was yesterday, and my sweet husband decided he would throw me a surprise party at a friends house. The kicker is - he actually kept it a surprise, as did ALL three of my kids! Now, I knew something was up, they're not that good - haha, but I wasn't sure what. I was thinking possibly a surprise party, but then I thought "nah, it's a monday night, he wouldn't do it on a Monday night". Haaa, yea right!

I had a good time. I am so SO lucky to have such great friends around me. I looked awful (crying on and off for the entire day), and I'm sure I was a bit distant at times (I just can't stay focused lately). It sucks! This dss bullshit is sucking the life right out of me (yes, that's right, this mess isn't over with yet). I had a therapy appt earlier in the day, so I was a huge puddle of tears during that. Then I got home to find out our caseworker has yet again tried to sabotage us (he'll tell us one thing, and then he'll tell his supervisor something else). He told us, again, that he would be making a drs appt for the kids, and to wait for the information on when they would be (and this time we actually called him every stinkin day to get the information, however, he never answers his phone, and we never once got a phone call back!!!!). He then tells his supervisor, as well as the social worker on post that is now also involved, that he has been waiting on US to make that appt, and we haven't yet done so. WTF!!! I can't take much more of this. It's stressing me the hell out. And see, now it's interfering with my partying .... this shit has GOT to end! haha! (ok, ok, I know using humor to mask pain wont make it go away, :-P)

The social worker that is now involved ... dss contacted the family advocacy center on post a couple of weeks ago, and they called Nicks command to schedule a mandatory mtg with Nick. He went in and said he would really prefer his wife be present during the mtg. She agreed that would be a great idea.

Sooo, we went in to talk to her. She basically just wanted to know what was going on. She heard the side from dss, and she was interested in hearing our side of things. So, we explained everything to her. We gave her the run down on our family, what we believe in, the things we do, etc. We explained the way we've been treated by our case worker, the lack of information we're getting, and our feeling that the report was filed simply to hurt us.

She met our children, very informally, and then expressed to us that she didn't see anything that would be cause for concern regarding them (they're all very outgoing, friendly kids who were talking her ears off, haha).

She said that we could go ahead and schedule physicals for all three of the kids through the hospital on post, and she would get in touch with her poc at DSS (our caseworkers supervisor) to see if the information gathered in those physicals would be sufficient enough for their investigation ... so the kids wouldn't have to go through a DSS dr. Wouldn't that be great!?

Those appts were scheduled for last friday. We don't yet have the bloodwork results back yet (hopefully today. The dr who saw the kids is on leave, so it's been difficult finding another dr to read us the results. Sounds like such a simple request, right? I don't know why they have to make it so difficult!), but the regular physicals went very well. My "malnourished" son fell in the 50th percentile for weight. Now, I don't put much stock in those charts - but I know a lot of people do, so... that's a big deal.

Baring any shocking report in the blood work - this better damn well be enough to bring this investigation to an END!!!

This has been such a hellish nightmare.
One that HAS actually caused my children to have nightmares.
How friggin sad is that?!

December 2, 2008

A Family on the Run: We'll soon be a lifetime movie!

No, we're not actually on the run.
Not yet anyway!

The irony in all of this is that JUST yesterday I let myself breathe for a minute. I looked at the calendar, realized that Dec 21st (the 45 day mark - the day this investigation would be over by, unless they filed to extend for 15 days) is getting closer and closer, and I let myself breathe a sigh of relief. We hadn't heard ANYTHING more from DSS after that initial visit. I was taking that as a good sign. I wasn't letting myself get excited about it, but in order to calm myself, I kept repeating "no news is good news" ... over and over and over again.

Haaa, not so much

Our case worker, lets just call him Dick (it fits him - he is SUCH an ass!!!), stopped by last night. Nick answered the door, and Dick shoved a stack full of medical consent forms into his hands and said "we need to get these signed". That's it, that's what he said. No desire to explain, just an abrasive "sign these". Nick took the papers and said "I'd like to take these to JAG (military legal aid) tomorrow to let them look over the wording before we sign anything". Dick, again, just as he did that first day, became very impatient and agitated with us. He grabbed the paperwork back from Nick and said "Since you guys are being uncooperative, I'll be filing a petition with the court first thing in the morning", and he turned to get back in his car. Nick was like "wait a second, we're not being uncooperative, we just want to have some legal advice before we sign these".

The paperwork that was given to us, BY HIM, in the beginning states, very clearly, IN BOLD LETTERS, that we should NOT sign anything that hasn't been fully explained to us, or anything that we don't understand or know our choices for. THAT is the right we were trying to exercise last night. Dick wasn't allowing it. Since we didn't sign right there, on the spot, he's petitioning the courts this morning. Probably already has, I don't know, we've been unable to get a hold of him or his supervisor this morning to try and clarify some of this crap!

I stepped outside when Dick was getting ready to leave again last night, and thats when Dicks co-worker came out of the car as well. She took the paperwork back from Dick to look through it. She asked what it all was, and why there were so many forms. Dick informed her (not us!!) that the clinic faxed over all of the consent and medical record forms to fill out at home, as opposed to in the office for the actual appt time, because we (neither nick or I) will be allowed to take our children to their appt... someone else will.


He never fucking told us that! He doesn't tell us ANYTHING!! He doesn't answer most of our questions, in fact he often cuts us off before we can even finish asking whatever it is we are asking.

So he's talking to his co-worker about "the perpetrators" (oh, isn't that really fucking nice!! I'm now referred to as a perpetrator!!!) not being allowed to take their children, and I interjected with a "Why?" Completely and utterly dumbfounded here, because seriously, WTF! I could understand such policies if there were sexual abuse, or physical abuse, or mental abuse, or other charges of the like. I could understand the need to make the child feel more safe and comfortable without the parents (the perpetrators) there, in order for the kids to talk more openly and honestly about their situations ... but in our case?! In a case about educational and nutritional neglect?! Why???? They'll confirm with our homeschool association that we are in fact registered and lawfully homeschooling, so that should clear up the educational neglect charge. And the nutritional neglect charge will be based on a standard head to toe physical examination... I mean, really, how is our being present, even if just in a waiting room, going to hinder that in ANY way?! UGH UGH UGHHHHHHHH!!!

He wouldn't answer me as to why. When I asked who would be escorting my child, he simply said "I don't know". Nice, thanks!! The co-worker gave us the number to the clinic if we had any more questions. Nick called them this morning - I'll get to that in a minute.

Dick again told us if the papers weren't signed, he would be petitioning the court this AM. We again explained that we were not going to sign them until we had legal aid look over them. We're trying to make sure our family's best interests are being protected, and to do that, we want to run everything through legal, get advice, and know our options before doing ANYTHING! One of the first papers he gave us to sign the first time he was here was worded in a way that sounded so self incriminating. He explained that the form was simply to waive our financial responsibility for things like medical appts etc that they schedule for us. Seems harmless, right? and it very well may have been, but like i said, the wording was just so sketchy. We didn't sign it, and never received a copy of it, so I'm not sure of the exact wording, but it said something to the effect of "I am financially unable to provide necassary medical care for my children" ... I mean, doesn't that just sound self incriminating?! Like admitting that we can't afford to take care of our childrens medical needs. Again, sure, it may have been innocent, but we're just not taking any chances! So, no, we didn't sign it.

The co-worker, noticing the date that our case was opened, asked US why it was taking so long. WTFFFF!?!!! Like we have ANY control over the length of THEIR investigation! Dick announced, just then, that he didn't have our phone number, and as such, has been unable to get us pertinent information regarding our case. He went on to say that he had already scheduled Larson an appt, and that it was actually scheduled for earlier in the day yesterday, but since he didn't have our number, he was unable to let us know about it. Mind you, this was all said in a very "blame-ful" (yes, I'll make up words if I want to, ha) fashion. Like it was our goddamned fault that he didn't have our phone number. I had no effing idea! I could have sworn it was on the initial paperwork that we filled out, but I could be mistaken. Making sure there was a box on the form labeled "phone number" was not really my focus at the time, ya know. It was HIS responsibility to get all the information HE was going to need in order to do HIS investigation. When I pointed this out to him (in a nice, polite way. I know I can big an extremely opinionated, loud mouthed, cussing biatch when I'm blogging ... but I know how to reign it in if need be, and I do. I'm good at it, haa) He went on to say that we should have called, and proceeded to judge us as parents. Saying that if it were him, and his family were being investigated, he would have made several calls to see where they were in the investigation.


The very LAST thing he said to us during that initial visit was "ok, I'm requiring that larson be seen by one of our drs. Wait for the phone call about when that appt will be"

Sooo, that is EXACTLY what we were doing. WAITING for that phone call. Believe me, it was hard. I handed Nick the phone THAT very next Monday (they came on a Thursday) to call to see what was going on, but then I said "No, never mind, I need to force myself to be patient (I can be extremely impatient, and I didn't want that to be detrimental). Dick said to just wait, lets listen to him and just wait". And now he is fucking judging us for that and using it against us!!!


They eventually left, after again reminding us he would be petitioning the court first first in the morning.

Sooo, I had a HUGE freak out session last night after they left. I mean, seriously, I'm at my brink!!! The idea that someone would be coming here, loading my kids (or just larson, we don't know, our caseworker absolutely refuses to inform us of anything) in their car, and taking them to the dr. What if they just don't bring them back?! I'm not letting it happen. I just can't. I cannot hand my kids over to someone. I can't. I wont.

Nick called the clinic this morning to find out why we weren't being allowed to being our children, and what we could do to dispute that. The lady he talked to was at least nice. Informative. Answered his questions. She explained that it is their policy, backed by the county of Richland, that for dss cases like this (where there are any kind of reported charges, no matter the type), the accused are not allowed on the grounds during any examination. Sooo, there really is no way around that. Nick asked who would be taking him, and she said it's usually the caseworker. So first, if that's the regular policy, our caseworker damn well knew it, and just didn't want to explain it to us. Secondly, since it's usually the caseworker that takes them, Dick also fucking knew that, and again, didn't tell us, and didn't feel the need to answer when questioned. I am so pissed! Nick asked if we could arrange for a family member (my grandma is ready to fly here within a couple hours of a phone call telling her we need her), or a friend could take them, and she said that that does happen often, but we would have to coordinate that with DSS. Coordinate with the jackass who is SO unwilling to work with us... yea, I can just see how far we're going to get with that.

Nick has our caseworkers supervisors number, and he has been trying to get a hold of him all day. No luck yet. We're hoping that we can find someone who is willing to work with us at DSS, and not just try to bulldozer over us.

We want to cooperate. We're not trying to be shits. We really want to do what we can to help this investigation move as quickly as possible, so we can move on from this. But we just wont sign any ol paper that gets thrown at us. THAT wouldn't be responsible. I'm also not ok with just anyone taking my kids out of this house for ANY reason. I'm perfectly ok with the full physical that needs to be performed. I understand. I can even make myself ok with the fact that policy states we're not allowed to take him ourselves. If we can't work out a solution that allows a friend or family member to take him/them ... I just don't know what we're going to do. Really, I don't.

Nick went to JAG again, and they quickly and emphatically advised us to get a lawyer as quickly as possible. So, I guess that's what we're doing now. I was really hoping it wouldn't come to this. We just don't have the funds. But, we'll find a way. One of the head ladies at JAG as a list of attorneys that work closely with military and are well versed with DSS cases. She's getting that to us this afternoon, so....

I am really feeling lost right now.

If the person who started all of this is still reading (I have my ideas) ... is this what you hoped would happen? Did you think far enough ahead to know all of this was a possibility? Are you consumed by guilt yet? Then CONFESS!! Come to me and talk to me about it!

December 1, 2008


don't you sometimes feel the need to just

yea, that's about where I am ...