Thursday was a day I tell you.
On Wednesday night, around 9:30, I received a call from a new family that I now consider friends. I had never met them, yet I have been praying for them for a few weeks. They are the family I mentioned had one of their children taken away by child protection a little over a week ago. They had received a letter in the mail and were suppose to report to court in the morning with their three other children. Their lawyer had told them to be prepared that this could mean that the court might take the other 3 children. They were trying to rally their friends and family to attend court in their support. I said I would try to attend, although I was babysitting my 15 month old little buddy.
We were on the phone until well after 10 pm. The next morning, I was getting the kids ready for school, when Michael came inside to tell me that his car had a flat tire. He was working on changing it. It was fighting him. I went out to help him a few times, sometimes, tires really fight back. The other challenge, other than the fact that the stupid tire was not wanting to come off, was that this is the car that has been stolen twice. And the spare tire has been stolen also. And we have not replaced it as it is $400 to replace. We could have looked at salvage lots. But we have not.
We were going to take the tire back to our garage and try to fill it up with our air compressor and see if it would stay full enough to drive to a tire shop to get it fixed, or even replace it with the mini vans spare. We finally got the tire off. Got the kids off to school. My little buddy arrived. I called a friend to see if she could watch my little buddy while I went to court. Then Michael came in to tell me the tire was not holding air and the van spare tire would not fit the car. I felt deflated (pun intended). I guess I can't go to court. I really felt called to go. Take the van, I said reluctantly. He left. Then I ran out and yelled, wait, I'll drive you to work. Duh!!!
I quickly packed breakfast and lunch for my little buddy and off we went. It was 8:15. I had to drive Michael to work to Eagan, from North Mpls, then drive my little buddy to Hopkins, then drive to Shakopee. Before I left, I quickly printed Mapquest directions. After I left Hopkins, I was following the Mapquest directions, and shortly after I got past Eden Prairie, I realized that my directions were horrible. I was lost and had no idea where I was. I called Michael at work and got his voicemail. I had only 20 minutes. At this point, I had grease on my pant legs, sweat in my pits and was laughing hysterically when the check engine light came on in the mini van. I then called my bro-in law Dan who thankfully answered and stayed on the phone with me and directed me to the front steps of the court house. What a blessing.
I was able to meet my new friends. And the best news, was that the county had made a mistake, and they had not needed to bring their other 3 kids to court. One of their friends had brought them home. What a blessing. But what a huge mistake that had caused them about 16 hours of misery and terror.
Anyway, it is a sad situation. This family has adopted a sibling group of 3 children that are hard children. I am pretty sure they are all 3 FASD, and have several other issues on top of FASD. Their 7 year old daughter had a melt down at school a little over a week ago which resulted in child protection being called and her being pulled from the home. I believe it was unnecessary. A huge over reaction. Huge. This is a loving family. One that has been trying to get help for their children. One that has been trying many different techniques with their children. One that is struggling with their children. Like we all are.
Thankfully, the judge and even the county attorney, really seemed to get this. This seems rare these days. This is not to say that their daughter is returning home, which is what I think should happen right away. That would be the right thing to do. But they are on the right track, and I do think she will be home fairly soon, all things considered. I have heard of similar cases where the child or children are not home for many months if not years.
This situation has hit home with me. As it could easily be Michael and I. Easily. When Akila was out of control today, we both reminded ourselves of that a couple of times.
I felt fortunate to have met this family. I hope to get to know them better. I believe that God puts families like this in our lives at the right place and the right time for a reason. I need them, and they maybe need me a little. It even seemed like Satan was working to keep me from going to court that morning. It was a rough morning I tell you. And I wasn't even dealing with what they were going through. I just had a stupid flat tire. That is what Michael told me later that night he was telling himself when he was out there saying to himself when he was originally annoyed. "Here I am annoyed with a flat tire, and this family has their child taken away, and are facing the possibility of losing their other 3 children". It is humbling.
Lord, thank you for protecting these four children, their parents, and please re-unite them as soon as you see fit.
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