Monday, July 16, 2007

Pre-Court Stress

The weekend after the 4th wasn't much fun at all. Since J's oh-so-delightful ex is again (for the third time) suing for custody of the boys and court was Monday, that was the main focus of the weekend. Friday afternoon, I did get to relax a bit, though. Pie and I baked a cocoa cake from Gourmet magazine, his first from scratch. He was delighted with it and with the "gorilla casserole" I made for dinner. He just had time to eat before Dark Man picked him up for summer visitation. J let him go a day early, for some reason. It turned out to be a good thing, though, because we wouldn't have had much time to enjoy him Saturday anyway. Knowing we'd be worn out before the court thing was over, we hit the sack a little after 7 Friday night. Wow, we are such wild and out-of-control lesbians! It almost hurts my feelings to go to bed so early since I am a night owl, but we knew we'd need the extra sleep.

We worked on court crap all day Saturday, organizing our paperwork into foldersd & tabbing it for easy reference in court. Ugh! I made some cranberry orange scones to get us through and J heated up gorilla casserole for our lunch. Finally, we took a break to go shopping for court clothes and grab some dinner. Of course, we have perfectly fine clothes we could wear in court, but new clothes made it more appealing. Bearable? I found this stunning black and white halter dress that looks like something Grace Kelly would have worn. J found me a classic black and white cardigan to go with it. I wanted to find some cute sandals with kitten heels, but no luck in a size 11. She found a pink watch she loves. There's this fabulous black big-brimmed hat that I am dying to go back and get. I couldn't wear it in court, but it looks damn fine on me and is perfect for the outfit. I may get it yet.

We were the last patrons at Bovalino's that night, enjoying gnocchi and spaghetti with meatballs on the patio. It's very soothing to me to be outside at night and if I'm also eating good pasta and salad with amazing garlic dressing, so much the better. Then, we headed home and pored over court materials until 3 a.m. Ugh! We took a brief sleep and church break, then looked over the papers more. Finally, we headed for the Dayton area, stopping for a mediocre dinner at Logan's Roadhouse. J loved her steak, but my open-face roast beef was not very good and I am terribly disappointed that they no longer serve fried green tomatoes. They do have awfully good sweet tea, though, and I am always happy when I can get good sweet tea without having to make room in my fridge for the pitcher.

We got a too-brief visit in with my grandies before having to go to bed and look over the court crap one last time. I will be so glad to have this ridiculousness over with for good. That I don't expect until Pie is 18. 5 and a half years. Not that I'm counting. We had to leave by 7 in order to meet with our attorney before court. He seemed utterly confident. Once J saw him in action in the courtroom, she felt more confident than she had. I never made it into the courtroom. The judge had interviewed the kids again in his chambers & had also talked to the ad litem. J's ex-MIL testified & our dear pastor did, too. I was so glad to have him there, if only for moral support. Once they'd been called, we were done. They had only allotted us a half day & the hearing was yet again continued. Thank goodness not until October or something like that and especially thank goodness not for my birthday!!! I was positive that would be the day, but it's actually Thursday & not tomorrow.

J's ex-MIL's whole case was that her ex is supposedly a good father & the kids love him. J said, "Well, they love candy, too, but that doesn't mean I'm going to let them eat it all the time!" She also lied on the stand, saying that J flipped her ex off when he came to get the kids and that we never gave him any info about the kids' counselor. She couldn't talk smack about me at all because it was all classified as hearsay since she has never met me. One of her big charges is that there's nowhere here for the kids to throw a ball or ride their bikes & that they're "trapped in an upstairs apartment all day long." Bull. For one thing, there is a really cool mall within half a mile to which they can ride their bikes to play giant chess, go to the movies, shop and hang out with other kids. For another, we have a sand volleyball court, a racquetball court, a basketball court, tennis courts and a pool for ball-playing, not to mention the big grassy areas throughout the complex. Not only that, but we are 10 minutes from the lake and there are scads of parks in town. Harrumph.

The weirdest thing we found out wasn't that J's ex's family had been the ones to pay all the child support he's come up with in the last 4 years (less than $5,000 for both boys) because we kind of suspected that. Can you imagine paying your 45 year old son's child support for him because he isn't working & lives in your basement??? It wasn't even the fact that he couldn't even be bothered to register Boot for school when he moved there in February and had her do it. She is 80 & should be through her child-rearing obligations, but nope. Not for her because her son is a lazy loser who's never taken responsibility for a damn thing in his life as far as I can tell. No, the weirdest thing is that the boys' great-grandma, who had lived with her ex & his mom, has been dead for three years! This is weird because the boys have been telling us up until July 4th not only that Grandma Lyon is alive & well & eating celery, but they've been telling us details of visits to her nursing home. I'm sorry, there is just something very sick about lying consistently for 3 years about your dead great-grandmother. Why lie, anyway? I feel quite sure that I will never be able to trust either boy again. Very disconcerting & creepy to know that they are so comfortable with and acclimated to lying. This is what he's done to them.

After court, we tried to have dinner at Mela in Springfield. Unfortunately, the food and service were both so abysmal that we couldn't eat it. At all. So, we gave up on that and decided to get on the road before trying to have lunch again. We did find a decent place, an Amish restaurant close to Mansfield. It was good to get home that night. I am not looking forward to court on Thursday, but I have my birthday to look forward to before that and a weekend in Columbus after.

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