Although, it seemed like time had stood still, giving up was never an option. It seemed as if life was moving for everyone else around me. I watched as people I knew had children, and watched their milestones pass, while my girls were without me. I was definitely trapped in time.
The court dates would drag on and on, I would call the solicitor on a weekly basis, but. It felt like I was a nuisance, after all they were just doing a job, at the end of the day they would go home. Fridays, were always the worst, I dreaded going to mummy’s house to see my girls as I never knew if I would be given the chance.
During that year, I attended court three times, it was draining me mentally and physically, most times it was a waste of time, all they ever did was paperwork and formality, I was frustrated. Although at times D would attend, I still felt alone. I was however, grateful for the company and for the judge to see I wasn’t alone.
I had started college, it was not the best idea after all. I couldn’t concentrate, and worse; for my English Oral, silly me decided to talk about my girls. My emotions got the better of me and I ended up crying. I failed my exam.
I was disappointed, but I decided to enrol the next year.
I had a real nice teacher, his name was Norman Stephens, he was tall with blonde hair, slightly bald, spoke with a clear English accent. One evening after college he called me aside. ” I would like to see you after class”. He said.
I waited for class to finish, and sat quietly worried I had done something wrong.
Norman took a seat beside me; “There is something about you”, He said. “In all my years of teaching English, I had never seen such a determined person”, ” I have also noticed a particular sadness”, I hope I am not intruding but if you ever want to talk, I am available.” “I’m not just your teacher ok”. He also stated that the college had a counseling session if I wanted to attend.
I was surprised, but. Norman was so right.
“Thank you, Norman” was all I could say. “You would never understand”. I thought.
I knew I wouldn’t attend counseling, as I didn’t trust anyone. Norman, on the other hand, hmmm! I could consider speaking to him. I smiled to myself as I walked away.
I continued to work and go to college, the relationship with D, was still going on, it wasn’t really a relationship as we were both unhappy, there was a lot of tension in the house. I was struggling with guilt.
This was because I felt that, I had bought this life on to myself, I had gone searching for D, I wanted him to save me from Eric, but due to my irrational thinking, I was trapped like a fly in a spider’s web. I had no mother, no brothers, no sisters, uncles nor aunt. I blamed myself continuously. I thought maybe if I had stayed in the violence with Eric, I would still have my girls. After all they were Eric’s children. I wished I was still with Eric, because the physical scars could heal. The emotional scars of loosing my girls, were here to stay. Even if he had killed me, my girls would have had someone of their own.
My girls were getting older, it was now five years since mummy stole them. I went to see the solicitor again, to discuss the way forward, little progress had been made, the solicitor stated she would be attending the preliminary hearing to contest the adoption, as mummy was moving too fast and I had not yet been able to contest the original order for wardship. I agreed with her.
The solicitor said to me, she would be requesting my file from social services. Having done my research in the library, I found out that mummy could not have my girls if there was evidence of abuse. I drew out the old case papers that I had photocopied and handed it to my solicitor. The solicitor was impressed. When we got up, she knew I was no longer going to wait on her, while my children lives were ruined. The solicitor told me, I did not have to attend but she would do her best. The plan was to put all adoption procedures on hold. I felt I was finally getting somewhere.
During this time I still saw my children at weekends, but I made sure that the time we had was fun. My other little girl was lonely, she knew she had sisters but couldn’t understand why they didn’t live with us, or why she could not sleep with them at their house. their house, those words were like a knife to my heart. Often she would ask “mummy when is my sisters coming home”?. With tears in my eyes, I would simply say , soon, they will be back soon. I had noticed, that now Ds daughter was becoming lonely, he would try to fulfill her needs. As a result we became a team. D now wanted the girl’s to come home as much as I did.
One had finally become two…
I still had my best Friend who was as ever supportive; she kept me sane, she would make me laugh, even when I was unable to, looking back I can see how easily my life had affected hers, but at that time, due to being damaged mentally and physically, psychologically and socially. I could not see the effects that I was having on her. Nevertheless, we still remained close, I knew I could tell her anything, I knew that, but I chose not to tell her all I was going through, also talking about my life, conjured up many emotions. It was easier to block it out. Sometimes I didn’t believe it myself.
My life continued on a day-to-day basis, I remained unhappy, no doubt about that, but I just existed, I felt guilty to laugh, or have fun as my girls were not with me, it felt as if they were abandoned, my eldest girl would still complain about the treatment, by her granny. “Granny said, that Janet ( not real name) is not our real sister, and we mustn’t love her” “that’s not true” I replied. “Please don’t tell mummy, anymore” was all I could say.
I was a failure. I didn’t know what to do..
One day I received a telephone call from the solicitor, she told me there was progress and that the court had appointed a guardian ad litem, “what on earth was that now,” I thought. I later found out she was an appointed guardian of the court, who would visit all the parties to the proceedings and make a decision on the children’s future. Finally I thought someone would be able to see through mummy.
The date was fixed..
I was excited, my girls would talk, mummy would be found out.
I was disappointed when I realized that the woman officer would see mummy first, then she would speak to the children. “Why?” “They were my children, why was mummy been treated like a saint?” I knew that mummy would be able to convince her easily.
The visit went ahead and after the visit, an appointment was booked to see me and D. I don’t know what mummy told her but I knew from the first moment that she arrived at my home she was bias, she had made up her mind about me. The very fact the visit took around fifteen minutes from start to finish, told me enough. She was brained washed. I imagine mummy would make her special tea, with vanilla essence, and made out to be a nice old lady. I recall looking at her thinking, if only my heart was an open book.
I remember thinking, how wicked people could be.
The officer got up to leave but what she said next made the hairs stand up on my body. I thought I would topple over.
“right I will be speaking to…. Eric next…”
The colour must have drained from within me, with that she said goodbye and closed the door.