Have you ever been surrounded by so much ignorance that it makes you troubleshoot yourself to see if you are malfunctioning, instead of those spewing the malfeasance?
Malfeasance is a comprehensive term used in both civil and Criminal Law to describe any act that is wrongful. It is not a distinct crime or tort, but may be used generally to describe any act that is criminal or that is wrongful and gives rise to, or somehow contributes to, the injury of another person.
So I have two parents, one who has passed and another who “hates my guts.” Why? Because as long as they were abusing me, I went along with it, because of that thing we all have inside of us that makes us feel like if we don’t have our parent’s approval, we don’t have anything. But when my father started abusing my children, I confronted them, him specifically. When I did, he looked like a guilty child that had his hand caught in a cookie jar, and walked very quickly to his car and went home. He then, having time to think about it, locked away in his sanctuary, decided that I was the felon, and that I must be punished by not allowing my mother and I to have contact, to the extent that he didn’t contact me when she was dying and excluded my name from her obituary. He told me the same would be for him. I would not know anything of his passing. I’m sure his girlfriend will go with his wishes to exclude me from his obituary as well.
It is not his passing I wish I did not know about. It is about the fact that as a child, he beat me pretty much every day of my life. My parents chain smoked in my face to the extent that I would get deathly ill every winter and my dad drove drunk quite often with me in the back of the car. One particular Christmas I refused to get in the car and he exploded and asked me if I thought if he wrecked I would inherit “all of this” as his hand swept the length of the house that we lived in. He went on to say that if they were going to die, he was taking me with them.
And that’s just the tip of the ice berg. It would not have come up had I not decided to try and try again to put our differences aside, before and after my mother passed. I sent him cards for every occasion for the past two years. He had a girlfriend and I attempted to make friends with her on facebook and things were great until this June, when I sent him a card and a gift card from Amazon. com. The card company I use wrote about a week later to tell me that his card had not been picked up. I wrote him to ask him if he had not seen it because I asked his girlfriend to make sure he got the gift card on the side because you could miss it, because it looked a bit like advertising and she assured me she would make sure he got it. The answer I got was at the same time shocking, but not suprising.
He told me that I had mentally abused he and my mother for years and that she was adamant that I not come and see her on her deathbed and so now he was telling me “No.” It was a gift and a card and it was sent with only the best of thougths. But then instead of trying to takl it out, like normal people, he would rather give me more of the same treatment he has extended to me all of my life. I would like to tell Christina Crawford that her mother had nothing on my dad. Wire hangers? My dad used the buckle part of his belt and he would hit with a fury, alway managing to get the welts above my school skirt so the nuns couldn’t see. Except for once, when they did. They did nothing.
So, in essence, their malfeasance is in not only depriving me of a mother and father that loved me and nutured me, but in being selfish, cold hearted people who cared only for themselves. They wanted a child, but they did not want that child to have a life they could not manipulate. I was a vessel in which they poured all of their anger and frustration. And then, they were suprised when the volcano finally erupted and all of the things they had done were now laid bare for all to see.
For goodness sake, I was sexually abused by the grandfather of one of the little girls I played with, at the age of eight years old. And because my parents abused me, all the kids in the neighborhood felt free to be abusive as well and I was pelted by rocks as I made my way home from what the old man had done to me. My father grabbed a shot gun and ran down the street. My mother slapped me in the face after he left and told me that she hoped I was happy, that my father would now be arrested and sent to jail for the rest of his life. And that ladies and gentlemen, was my life as an eight year old child. The closure I got from this episode was a book on how babies are made. It was the cartoony art you see when you watch South park, the cut out constructiony stuff. I was pretty confused becuase there used two chickens for an example and the egg thing and the baby in the tummy thing was a new issue. Kids are exposed to a lot more than they were in that day, so it took me awhile to figure it out. I actually looked it up in a medical journal my parents got for Christmas a little later on, and that’s when I figured it out…..
Anyway, so my dad’s girlfriend didn’t take me off facebook until the next day, when I was feeling particularly sad about the whole thing and I wrote a poem about it. It’s here in a previous post. But Zip Zap Zoom, she was gone about five minute afterwards.
I keep thinking back to “Music Box” which is a movie with Jessica Lange and Armin Mueller-Stahl(tremendous actor). It was about a woman who found out that her father was a holocaust war criminal. At first she didn’t believe it, because he had been so kind and sweet all of her life, but as the evidence came forward, his true nature was right there in front of her. She too removed her child from his presence because of what he really believed and who he really was. It feels like that you know. Because he got away with being so cruel to people. And he is so cruel (my father) that he refuses to make peace, even though he is the one who has done all of the damage. It is his ultimate strike. And the words, May God have mercy on his soul, come at a hard price, from my lips….
If he were the only troublesome person in my life, or on the fringes therein, I think I might be able to just say to myself, no troubleshooting necessary. But my husband’s sister Amber Lovill is in there throwing the punches too. She was convicted of forgery of a financial instrument about six or seven years ago and sentenced to two years of probation. Well, three probation violations and that many years later, she is now in a correctional institution in the state of Texas. She asked her father to come and pick up her baby when it was born because she was in jail. She told us that she had driven off in her boyfriends truck and he had had her arrested. It was October and she said that she would be out in January at the latest.
So Woody’s Dad and I drove to Texas the last week in October to wait for the baby to be born. This is the same week, while waiting in a hotel room that I not only found out my mother had died, but that I was not included in the obituary. Add to Dad in Law being as nervous as a cat in a room full of rocking chairs and I think you get the stress level that week. We got to see the baby right after he was born and then we waited until the social worker told us to come and get him, because we wanted her to have time to bond with her son.
The nurse unfolded the blanket before we left so that we could see that he was absolutely perfect. And by the way, he was a beautiful baby, just gorgeous in every way. I looked down to see no bandage to indicate he was circumsized and asked the nurse why. She showed us the paperwork and informed us that mother had not signed the consent form. I asked if it could be done and she said at this point there was no way it could be done there as the baby had already been released. Later Amber, in the only two days she ever spent with him, saw me bathing him and complained. She already knew because we had had this discussion before, but now she informed me that she had signed the papers and it was our fault because we were in such a hurry to get the baby away from the hospital.
Then the other shoe dropped. Yes, Amber did have an unathorized vehicle charge, but that had been many years ago. She was now in penal rehab lockdown not only because of the forgery charge (she claims she plead out, but was innocent), but because this was her second probation violation and when she tested dirty she was five and one half months pregnant. She actually appealed this several times and each opinion, explaining why they denied the appeal, came with more information as to the extent of everything that went on in this time period. For example we found out that at five and one half months pregnant she was three times the cutoff level for meth. We were later to find that sometime during this whole event she was caring for another male child around the age of five or six years old. This is why I know she should not have a chance to raise this child. This other poor child was exposed to all this. I would call that a track record on her part. From what she says in her letters to us, after we found out the truth of course, when she was arrested, the child was placed in the custody of his God parents. She claims the child was not hers, but a room mates who was now in prison for life. All I know is that when she requested me to call the person who was caring for her possessions at the time as she requested, he asked me which son of hers I was caring for. In the hospital the social worker also asked her father which son would be going home with us. It baffles the imagination.
So after two years it was apparent that she wasn’t coming for the baby and my husband and I had bonded with him, so we decided to adopt. we informed her by text, because she refused to talk to us on the phone, that we wanted to adopt. She had a fit, via text, and said she would fight it. She said, via text, that we knew (which we didn’t) that she would be off paper in January and this was the reason we were trying to adopt. She called us snakes in the grass and told me she understood why my father didn’t love me. I stayed civil and sent her our lawyers information. She texted my husband and told him to have our lawyer call her.
Our lawyer did just that and she hung up on him and never called back. She ducked service. At the court hearing we were able to terminate the father’s rights because he signed for service and did not show. Despite the fact that she knew the time and date of the court date, she did not show, but because she had someone else sign for her paperwork, we could not terminate her rights. And then she fell off of the face of the earth.
She had never spoken to us much before, she had gone months without calling. When she got out the second time we offered her a phone and phone service and she refused. She wouldn’t let us call her because she needed her minutes. My hand to God, this is what she said. I checked her Jail records in February and found out that she had been arrested for a third probation violation. The upside to this was that now she had to sign the service record. The downside is, she wrote a letter to the judge requesting an appearance. This happened last week, the same week my father told me that my mother hated me on my deathbed……
So I’m trying to keep it together. I’m trying to appreciate all of the good things. I know Amber can’t win. She lied to the judge and told her that she was stuck in Corpus when she wasn’t in jail and couldn’t get passes, so she couldn’t get her child or have access when the truth is when he was about a year and a half we told her that we would bring him to her because we thought it would be cruel to do it later when he was more aware of what was going on. She told us okay, she would let us know when, and then she never did. But it is so stressfull because I can’t let him go to her when I know she was doing drugs around this five year old she had living with her before. And at this point, he is our son and it would be detrimental for all three of us.
I want to wish Amber and my Dad well. I want them to be lifted from their ignorance and be given a chance to be happy in life. I also know it has to start with them. The one thing I wish they would stop is hurting the people who are just trying to be good people and get on with their lives. I don’t have an answer for this and I am odds at what to do about it, but believe me, with all my heart, I wish I knew….