"On the plains of Oklahoma, with a windshield sunset in your eyes like a watercolor painted sky, you'd think heavens doors have opened."
Fly Over States

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Scary Things

Jezebel's muzzle hair is growing like weeds! The first picture was taken, today.

Here is one taken in the last day or so.

Now look, again, at today's picture.

See how much more defined the line between the hair and the black is getting? In person, the change is really, really substantial. And from the side, you can see hair coming in on black part above the snout. If all goes well, I think it will be pretty filled in by Halloween.

At Halloween, we put a baby gate on the front door so the dogs don't get out. Husband tells all the kids that the white dogs are actually "ghost" dogs. Some of the little kids get a little nervous.

And here is something really scary:

One or two days a month I have to spend the better part of a day filing and getting things up to date. This was one of those days. Looks like a bomb went off.

I have a sex abuse case that I am working on and spent a bit of time this afternoon drafting a motion to ask the court to allow the child to testify via closed circuit television. In my state, to have this granted you have to show that there is a substantial likelihood, based upon expert opinion testimony, that the child would suffer severe emotional trauma if forced to testify. I had a call in to the child's therapist because that is the person who would have to give the expert opinion. I could not file the Motion before talking to him but had a significant deadline to make so I had to get started on the motion, immediately. I had my doubts that the child would suffer severe emotional trauma but knew he was anxious, as any young child would be. It was not until after the motion was drafted that the therapist called back and we discussed the case.

Following our conversation, I tossed the motion into the shredder. There are worse things than not being severely traumatized by giving testimony of your abuse. Frankly, I was somewhat relieved.

I recently was at the courthouse and a lawyer flagged me down to let me know that I'd just been assigned to one of his cases. As it turned out, the mother (his client) lives in another state with the baby (my ward), who is not much more than a newborn. The mother had left the area when the father took up with a new girlfriend right after the child's birth. Mom had been gone two months and the new girlfriend is currently living with the father (and would be helping to provide child care to the infant - you can imagine how happy the mother was about THAT). The parents had just come out of the courtroom and the Judge had granted the father one week a month visitation until the next hearing in February.

I took the opportunity to meet with them and snagged a few hugs and kisses on the baby. Frankly, I was really surprised that the judge had given a week per month to the father since this would separate this very young infant from his primary caregiver (the child hadn't seen his dad in two months, more than half his life). But I was SHOCKED when the mother proceeded to sit down and breastfeed the baby. Good God. By that time, the court was adjourned so I couldn't march myself back in there and explain to the judge that this young mother's milk was likely to dry up if she missed a week per month. Moreover, the notion of taking a child from its mother's breast is horrifying. I wouldn't take a PUPPY from its mother before it was weaned.

The father kept minimizing it, saying the that the baby could take a bottle. True, but that doesn't stop the mother's ability to nurse the child from being impacted, not to mention the bond between mother and child will be significantly disrupted. Disrupting a nursing baby's routine is no small matter.

I didn't make too big a fuss over it because the cow was already out of the barn and mom was already fighting back tears. By the time I can get back before the judge, it will be after Thanksgiving. All I could do was write down the Le Leche League and urge mom to contact them when she got home for support and advice for making sure her breast milk supply didn't dry up. I suggested she try to pump in advance to send some with the baby, next week, but who knows how that is going to work out.

I don't know if the male attorney brought this up and the judge discounted it; whether he didn't know the mother was breastfeeding so didn't make the argument; or whether he just didn't realize how important this is.

I'm kind of distressed over the situation, frankly. I need to think about this.

But back to more fun things. I threaded a bunch of needles with RWB thread so I can stitch on the binding of the Patriotic Quilt while watching the vice presidential debates, tonight.

The highlight of the day was taking steps to sign up for some long arm classes in North Carolina in March 2009. I am very excited to be taking a McTavishing class from Karen McTavish. I am also signing up for a class on Victorian Feathers and Heirloom Quilting. They were sure pricey and I will be gone several days, resulting in even more expenses. I wish I knew how to do all this so I could charge those kind of prices for something fun!

Evelyn walked in while I was trying to clean up the office. She then plopped down on the floor and snoozed most of the afternoon.

I'm off to grab a bite and settle in for the big political show-down!


Lisa said...

Ahh Penny I think it would be best for the mother to pump daily while the baby is with daddy, of course there is a big possibly that the baby will reject the breast after a week of bottle. So sad why would a judge allow a baby a week visit... Much better to have a few hours a day...Lets pray the father gives up after a day or two when the baby crys to much for momma and nothing bad happens.
Grrrr where was this judge brain.

Penny said...

Lisa, the problem is that the mother is in a state several hundred miles away. I am so alarmed and feel so helpless.