11/27/09

Watch out for that speed bump!


It’s funny how your life’s path has its twists and turns.

There are times when I am feeling funny, and flip, and I usually try to find the humor in the face of adversity. But today is not one of those times. I am talking straight up, and I hope that everyone is listening.

A year ago I was bitching and complaining about my bitching and complaining daughters. Today I’m standing beside one of them and holding her hand as she takes the stand in a courtroom in the hopes of ending a traumatic and stressful couple of YEARS.

In Oregon, and I’m sure elsewhere in the US, a person who is charged with a crime must face the judge to determine if there is just cause for a trial. (OR something like that) After being prepped by an amazing assistant D.A., and several wonderful detectives, Sassy felt confident that the decision to move forward, and take this seriously, was the right one.

She had to go ON THE STAND and answer many, many questions from this young man’s attorney. I explained to her beforehand that his attorney was just doing his job. She needed to remember that it wasn’t PESONAL, and that she just had to be HONEST when answering the questions. Honesty- that was the rule of the day.

I was sequestered OUTSIDE the courtroom, and was not able to be inside close to her on a defining moment in her young life. I stood outside the glass doors at the very back of the courtroom and watched as she raised her hand, and then settled into the hot seat. It just about killed me.

I watched as best I could, making sure I was in her line of vision. I sent her all the strength I could muster and waited. During those 40 minutes my stomach was turning inside out, and I was pretty sure that I was going to lose the contents at any minute. I saw her leave the stand and walk down the aisle toward the back of the courtroom and knew it was my turn. As she left the courtroom to compose herself, I made my way down the aisle.

It’s amazing to me how much courage you can have when your child’s well-being is at stake.

At the end of it all, it was determined that there was enough evidence for this to proceed. When we were finished and in the hall preparing to leave, Sassy and I clung to each other and wept.


We pray that this unfortunate young man finds his way. There were several times that I looked at him and was reminded that HE is someone’s little boy. It broke my heart. He has his whole life ahead of him – and if he doesn’t see this as his chance to change, then he’s doomed.


So, on this day after Thanksgiving, our hope is that we can all send a prayer his way to speed him along this path of healing. We are working very hard at this home to heal our little one.


Let’s hope his lesson has been learned.


82 comments:

Marinka said...

I am in awe of your family and your grace during this terrible time. My love to you all.

slouchy said...

Yes. Well put.

Pop and Ice said...

Court is so hard and emotionally draining. I'm glad to hear that the matter is going to proceed and do hope the young man gets help, as well. Hugs and kisses to Sassy. And you too.

LegalMist said...

It's funny how having children of your own makes you see others, even those who have done something awful, in a whole new light. You see an accused thief and think, "That is someone's little boy." You imagine how cute he was when he was two. You wonder just what went wrong, and pray for it to go right again....

BP (Before Parenthood), I'd always just think, "I hope he gets what's coming to him."

I'm glad you and Sassy survived the ordeal, and I do hope the young man gets justice, whatever that may turn out to mean in this case.

CatLadyLarew said...

What an experience this has been. I admire Sassy's and your strength as you face this together. Hugs to you all!

Ann's Rants said...

Clapping! (hugging) Clapping!

Suzy said...

Stalking is so awful and so scary. There was a guy in my neighborhood who stalked me for 2 years after he asked me out and I turned him down.

We went to the same supermarket and once I didn't realize he was there and when I saw him, he was standing backwards in the long line and staring at me.

Another time he followed me home on foot and I could hear his footsteps come closer and closer as I walked faster and faster. Finally I got to my street and turned left.

I quickly half ran up that street and when I went to cross to get to my place, I stopped and looked both ways for traffic and saw him standing at the corner watching me. When I spotted him, he ducked behind a wall.

He finally moved away because he was a screenwriter and this town is very hard for screenwriters. THANK God.

Kate Coveny Hood said...

Brave girl and brave mom! Very inspiring.

Moonlight Hollow Musings said...

I had to go through a similar process many years ago and it is gut wrenching at the least. I mentioned you and yours in my post yesterday. Please check it out.

Malisa

Rachel Cotterill said...

Well done Sassy. That must've taken a massive amount of courage, I'm glad she was able to do it.

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

You and sassy are an inspiration to all of us. You are in my heart and prayers, as well as the boy that needs to change his life around.

Anne said...

Blessings to you all for your strength and courage...and prayers that this boy can find his way and that his family or someone will stand next to him as he make his way.

Coco said...

I assume this is the young man that has been stalking your daughter. He obviously needs therapy. I hope he gets it. I am so glad that everyone took this seriously enough to do something about it before it because a really bad situation that could not be reversed.

PurestGreen said...

All of this has left me thinking that the feeling of being thankful must be on overdrive at your house. Well done to you both for bravery.

Zip n Tizzy said...

It makes me tear up every time I read an update. I can only imagine how that was, for both of you, yesterday.
Remembering what it was like to be 17, I am so glad she has you as her mom, and that you are taking this seriously and showing her that she doesn't have to take this silently, that she will be listened to.
I too hope he gets the help that he needs. I also believe that when this is over, it's going to leave a very strong impression on Sassy, helping her become a strong woman at a young age, and I believe it will influence her decisions for how she wants to move her life forward. Not a bad age to have strong convictions. I also believe this will bond the two of you in incredible ways, as she's getting ready to make her way into the world.
Sending lots of love and healing thoughts your way.

KaLynn said...

My heart breaks for all involved. I cried when I read this and every post involving this situation. You are in my prayers.
Hugs,
K

Madison said...

I hope the court system doesn't let you down.

Sandee said...

Don't know anything about the charges here, but I've see lots of people go down the wrong path. Life is full of choices. It's up to us to make the right ones.

Have a terrific day. :)

Snappy Di said...

*heavy sigh* for everyone involved. Sounds like he needs to do a little bit of time mixed with a great deal of counseling.

Di
The Blue Ridge Gal
Just Vignettes

SkylersDad said...

That was a great post, nicely done. You have often made fun of yourself on this blog, and of your parenting skills.

I think you are absolutely wonderful, and Sassy is proof that you rock.

Elaine said...

So sorry your baby girl has to go through this. Thank God you are there in her corner.

Sue said...

Court and attorneys are like game players. Feelings of others, victims and those that have done wrong are ignored. It is all about the winning and sadly, at times, no one cares what it does to the individuals involved. When my son was younger, he struggled, and him and I were caught up "in the system". It is still very upsetting to me how serious situations, such as your daughters, can be made into a game by those in the court. I hope some day it will be about true justice, not just about who can win the game. I can only imagine how terrified your daughter was as were you, along with worrying about her. Stay strong and everything really will be okay. Take care. Sue

Linda said...

Thinking of you and your family, and wishing that Sassy's date in court kicks his butt!!

G said...

So far it sounds like things are off to a great start.

Hope it continues to stay that way for you and her.

Char said...

My heart goes out to both of you. So brave you are. {{BIG HUGS}} to you and Sassy.

xoxo

Brian Miller said...

good job being there for your little one mom. she will remember that forever. and the lesson you are teaching her in the hopes that the boy is healed as opposed to evicerated...priceless.

smiles.

Rebecca said...

I am so proud of the both of you! What a strong young woman you have raised. It would have killed me not being able to be in that court room with her. I see where she gets her strength from.....you.

Happy Thanksgiving!

otin said...

It is a necessary step. A lot of stalker issues are just swept aside, and some of them end tragically, like that girl from that old show, "My Sister Sam". I say protect your own. You can pray for someone else, but Jeffrey Dahmer was someone's child also.

I am glad that you took action!

Trooper Thorn said...

Your strength is a great gift to your daughter. And vise versa.

Alix said...

So glad the courtroom is behind you for now. Sassy did good and so did you. I am touched by your compassion for the accused and certainly do hope he can process the consequences of this experience for his betterment.

It will be a relief to be done with this once and for all.

Vodka Logic said...

How graceful for you to have compassion for the young man making your daughters life a misery. It is something I am not sure I could do but luckily I have not been in the situation. Thank you for sharing such a trying time with us all and godspeed to everyone.
xx

Eternal Lizdom said...

She's very fortunate to have such an awesome mom. my mom is my hero because she listened and believed me when I finally told her my secrets. It didn't mean life became the best ever, all sunshine and roses. But had she doubted me or questioned me or not been by my side for the years of hard work ahead of us, we wouldn't have the fantastic relationship we have now. It was a defining moment.

Paige said...

Im glad things are moving along on this. Sassy will be fine

But I have to say to the above commenter, Sue--it is NOT a game to attorneys and courts. That it may look that way to you does not make it so, and it is not fair to dismiss a whole system based on limited experiences. It is our job, just like it is yours to do whatever you do. That it conflicts with the emotional aspects the other players have to deal with does not make us bad people, or make us not care...but it is what makes it work as well as it does.

Believe me, there are many days I cry my heart out over a legal matter, and I do not do that because it is a game. I do this because I do care about people--even the ones accused of crimes. That does not mean I do not care about people like Sassy--not at all. It is just not my job to represent her, that is someone else's job. If we all do our jobs, things work out the best possible way (most of the time).

I realize this is not relevant to Sassy's situation, but it gets damned old being the bad guy just for doing our jobs

Vodka Mom said...

I respect attorneys very much- my FATHER was one, after all.

I guess it's like any other profession - there are always a couple of bad apples.

And the one who helped Sassy the other day? She was SPECTACULAR.

Sue- I am very sorry for your experience. Very sorry indeed.

Desert Songbird said...

I'm very glad your daughter has someone as strong as you to be her advocate, her liaison, HER MOMMY. She is using this very stressful time to become an amazing woman. This will help her become an even stronger and more confident woman as the years go on. Way to go, Sassy. And way to go, Mom!

Joanie M said...

WTG VM and Sassy!

I'll keep you in mind when I go to court on Thursday with the woman who stole my credit card. I won't be remembering she once was someone's little girl. I'll be hoping for the day they ship her off to Michigan to face charges there.

Alex said...

I'm so proud of her and you, and so very thankful that now there will be consequences for this young man.

Enough is enough.

The Mind of a Mom said...

My prayers are definitely on the way! Sassy is one amazing young lady and I know from experience that what she went through is/was extremely scary and dangerous and what she did by telling and standing up is going to help her on her path to healing herself!
Please let her know that from one victim to another, she did the right thing and things can only get better from here!

feefifoto said...

You're both very brave and have a lot to be proud of. Best of luck, and let's hope this means the end of harassment.

Geezees Geezees Custom Canvas Art said...

I am proud of you and her!

The Only Girl said...

I've been following along for sometime now and just wanted to say how sorry I am your family is going through this difficult time. I hope you all heal and grow from it. I admire your strength.

Tamara said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you and you and Sassy both have an enourmous amount of courage. I can't even imagine what you've both had to go through. I'm so happy they are proceeding!!!

gretchen said...

Sounds like you've raised a brave and strong young woman!

Dory said...

This one is to Sassy:

I wish I was as brave as you.

15 years ago, I didn't testify. Now he is waiting for his trial for rape and kidnapping of another woman.

I can't help but feel it's my fault she was hurt.

If I was more brave, perhaps she'd've been spared.

Good on you, dear.

Expat mum said...

It's very gracious and compassionate of you to think of that male as being someone else's child. I hope that he has someone as loving as you for a parent. God, wouldn't it kill you to think your child could do something like this?
And I also hope that your daughter and your family can heal and learn from this experience. Well done.

Ryan Ashley Scott said...

It takes a strong a woman to stand up for herself, especially in such a situation. She's learning from you. :) I will keep the young man in my prayers - and your family, as well.

Gayle said...

Wishing you lots of strength.

Simply Ee said...

Inspiring. I admire both of your guys strength. i wish you the best

Masala Chica said...

What an emotionally trying day. I am amazed by your family and wish you and your daughter the best. You guys have the strength and grace to get through this.

12ontheinside said...

Wow, what a difficult thing for her to go through. It sounds like you have done a fantastic jopb in supporting her, while at the same time being able to feel pity for the man involved.

Mrs. K said...

i think i would have been a wreck...but way to go mama bear! well done. you will all come out of this stronger and wiser.

anymommy said...

You two are grace personified. This will be a true weekend of thanksgiving. Let's hope he does learn.

Captain Dumbass said...

I'm impressed that you could go through all of that and still still think of him. Hopefully this does turn him around and straighten him out.

Good job, mom.

Aunt Becky said...

I am so proud to know you. So proud.

Chocolate Covered Daydreams said...

So much growing happens during times of adversity. I'm so glad that Sassy has such a wonderful mom to give her the strength when she is feeling weak and afraid. Standing up for what is right must be the greatest feeling for her, yet, so sad for the kid that needs major guidance and help. I hope that he gets that help.

LadyFi said...

What difficult times, and yet how brave you both are - and most of all, I truly appreciate your compassion towards the young man. He is, of course, a lost soul and it must be heart-breaking for his parents too...

Frau said...

Its heart breaking all around but I hope he finds his way and Sassy heals.

Secretia said...

What a time it is, growing up is full of new challenges. As parents you end up growing up all over again with your children, feeling all their emotions combined with your own. I pray for a just conclusion to it and peace to your family as well.

Secretia

Tammy Howard said...

This was so beautifully put. Hoping for a quick and just resolution that brings Sassy (and you, of course) some peace. And bless you, for having compassion for the young man who put her through this.

Paige Lacey said...

It's so hard to do the right thing sometimes. Hope this brings the resolution you and your family needs.

WeaselMomma said...

Sassy is so brave and I can imagine how you must have felt when not able to be close to her when she had to testify. I hope that this all passes very soon.

Lynn from For Love or Funny said...

Thinking of you, Sassy, your family, and the boy who has lost his way. Wishing you all peace.

Mary Anne said...

I'm so glad that Sassy has the courage to do this very hard, but very RIGHT thing that she's doing. No one could blame her if she didn't. I also give you a lot of credit for wishing good for someone that has caused you so much fear and pain. I hope that he gets the help he needs.
My friend's sister is going through something like this (with added death threats to her and her family) and they are afraid to go to the police. I pray that her psycho stalker gang-banger ex-boyfriend just gets bored of it. Unfortunately, he is beyond help.

Melissa B. said...

Oh, Vodka Mom, my heart breaks that you and Sassy have had to go through this ordeal. But I also agree with Pseudo and others: Y'all are an inspiration to the rest of us. Ella Numera Una is studying to be a lawyer, and I know she's going to bring some sensitivity to the profession...

Under the Influence said...

You have a big heart. What a wonderful thing.

Confessions From A Working Mom said...

Stopping by from SITS...

What a brave heart you AND your daughter have. There are so many people who would have backed down-- so many parents who wouldn't have allowed their child to stand up and do what's right. My thoughts and prayers are with you both.

And what's more-- you seem to have it in your heart to forgive. What a true blessing that is.

~Elizabeth
http://confessionsfromaworkingmom.blogspot.com

Lee of MWOB said...

Oh lady. My heart broke for you and Sassy reading this. To stand at the back of the room not being able to be there literally standing by her side....wow. But she felt you next to her I am sure.

And to think of the guy that way - as someone else's son....you have such a generous pure heart.

Joanie said...

You amaze me. Bravo to you and Sassy for doing something so difficult. And God bless you for your compassion.

Far Side of Fifty said...

You did the right thing..both of you were very brave and no one peed their panties:)

The Peach Tart said...

let's hope this is the end of the nightmare

just making my way said...

Thank you for the update. Very proud of both of you, I don't know that I would be so forgiving - it's inspiring to read that part. Good for you, VM.

Chris said...

You are both very strong and brave to move forward with this. I admire the compassion you show for the unwell young man. I'll keep you all in my thoughts and prayers.

Lisa said...

I applaud the bravery of both of you. Sometimes you have to press on, even when it would be much easier to simply try to forget. I hope that the boy involved will find his way.

Jeanne said...

Tough stuff to deal with. Sounds like she was a trooper, and you were your usual compassionate self. Like you, I pray this young man is able to change direction.

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IB said...

I am impressed beyond words with your daughter's strength and your strength. and the compassion you both have shown for the young man. By going through this you are protecting your family and, at the same time, giving that young man the opportunity to right his life before he gets himself caught up in a life of trouble.

Ladybird World Mother said...

All my love to you guys. You are all totally awesome. Full of grace. xxxx

Crys said...

Good job to you and Sassy! I never had the courage to stand up to the ones that wronged me and made my life hell. I wish I had even just the ounce of strength I have now because maybe I would have. So honestly "I'm proud!"

Yvonne said...

I didn't have time to read all the comments and I'm pretty sure that it's been said, but I must say it myself...
That you can look at that young man the way you do is a God thing. Being willing to not just judge someone by how they have treated you and caused you hell is something not so common these days. May God continue to bless you and your family. You are a shining example of forgiveness in a not so forgiving world.

Yvonne said...

I didn't have time to read all the comments and I'm pretty sure that it's been said, but I must say it myself...
That you can look at that young man the way you do is a God thing. Being willing to not just judge someone by how they have treated you and caused you hell is something not so common these days. May God continue to bless you and your family. You are a shining example of forgiveness in a not so forgiving world.

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