Saturday, July 24, 2010

The Wonderful Experience of Having a Child

Raising a child is one of the most rewarding experiences that two people as new parents can witness in their lifetimes. Imagine someday that your little infant will speak, and when the baby does speak, what will be their first words? How long will it be before they walk? There are many questions and lots of unknowns when raising an infant, but those questions will surely be answered as your loved one grows. 
My wife Virginia and I have discussed as recently as tonight the thought of having a child. I whole-heartedly believe that this is what we both really want. I pray that God bless us with a healthy child whether it be a girl or a boy. Below is a poem written by Sherry C, a very wonderful poem that graces the thoughts of an experience when having a child. 

Love Is . . . . .

The softness of a baby's skin
The smile of their innocent eyes
The warmth that I feel
When my touch hushes their cries

Love is . . . . .

Watching them learn how to walk
Exploring the world through their vision
Bouncing along from room to room
Picking them up from each collision

Love Is . . . . .

Holding their hands, playing patty-cake
Enjoying their infectious mirth
The feeling of arms around my neck
Showing me what I am worth

Love Is . . . . .

The glee of first words spoken
Though only parent can understand
Cuteness of those baby teeth
Till they bite you on the hand

Love Is . . . . .

Many a splendid thing they say
And we all know this to be true
But it's hard to beat those "baby years"
When their only world is you.

Sherry C

Thursday, July 22, 2010

A Message In A Bottle

My name is Christopher and I have a story to tell.  I make no accusations or false claims, only the events as I experienced them and as it was told to me by my girlfriend.  This is a one sided story for I cannot speak on anybody else's behalf.  I moved back to Dallas 4 and a half years ago to attend college after serving 5 years in the army.  So, I found an apartment and a new job.  While working I came across one of my coworkers that seemed like a genuinely good person, which as you may know is hard to come by these days.  She seemed a good christian woman by all accounts so I decided that it may be a good idea to try to get to know her on a more personal level.  It turned out that the feeling was, to my astonishment, mutual.  One day I was asked to lunch to meet her family, so off I went to sit down and have a nice meal with my new-found friend and her loved ones.   I was met with what felt like a little bit of scrutiny by the family, but due to their background I assumed it was appropriate.  I tried to keep it light and tell a few amusing anecdotes however the mood never faded.  This encounter started myself and my girlfriend down a long, winding road of ups and downs.  You see, the family appears to believe I'm not who I claim to be.  I'm believed to be a warlock and a rapist. Though I've only spoken to them that one time, judgment was made and my label set, no matter how untrue and unfounded that was.

     Let me tell you more about my girlfriend.  She's 10 years older than I am however that doesn't seem to be as much as an issue as most would claim. We've grown to trust and confide in each other. Shes a great woman, however has a few emotional scars from her past that occasionally come up for air.  Don't we all?  She has an intelligent, though somewhat sheltered daughter who at first seemed to be happy for her mother's new found relationship.  That was to eventually change though.
     Our first actual date occurred a few months later.  We decided on the classic dinner and a movie.  We also decided to try to be open with her daughter, maybe to teach her what a proper relationship of this level should be, so we brought her along.  Everything went well during dinner, smiles all around.  I don't remember which movie it was we were going to see, but it didn't end up mattering too much.  Our movie was interrupted by her mother, who was outraged.  I was called some evil names, all of which were untrue, but the evening was ruined all the same.  We tried to watch the movie however it turned out to be a little inappropriate anyways so we left.  After being dropped off at my vehicle, they went home.
     Unknown to them, their family was was home waiting for them intent on an intervention of sorts.  I cannot fully understand the spiritual intentions of their goal, however after being both physically restrained and verbally tormented, my girlfriend called, in tears, to break up with me.  Reluctantly, I accepted the events and judgment made by the influence of her family, whom she loves so much.  After a short time, I received another phone call from her to explain what happened.  At 37, she felt that it was her choice of what was best for her and her daughter, so we resumed our relationship.  Only one thing was different.  Interventions are designed to be traumatic for the intent of changing a loved one's self-imposed bad habits.  My girlfriend understood the misguided best intentions of her family, but her daughter did not.  She had been shaken up pretty badly when her aunt held her to the ground screaming at her.  Well, self preservation kicks in in the mind of a 15 year old child, so she became distant and understandably so.  We decided that to protect her we had to remove her involvement in our relationship whenever possible.  Not exactly what we had planned but we had no alternative.
     Before I knew it, I was accused of performing some sort of satanic ritual on my girlfriend's sister, who came up with this memory months after it supposedly happened.  I don't really know her, but it seems that she has a very easily excitable temper.  She later exclaimed to my girlfriend that it was her time to get married and have a family, not my girlfriend's.  Unfortunately, that was the nail in the coffin as far as the family was concerned.  I had never been so hated in my life.  I could understand if I had done something wrong but I cannot, for the life of me, figure out what I had done to deserve this hatred.  Nevertheless, not having any contact with the family, I was unable to voice my side of this horrible misunderstanding.
    I figured that with time all matters would be aired out and an understanding could be achieved.  Unfortunately, that was never the case  My girlfriend's daughter became distrustful of myself and eventually even her mother, who with the exception of Jesus, loves her more than anybody else and has done her best to protect her from birth (in and of itself a miracle.)  My relationship with my girlfriend has become strained in no small part due to the situation we find ourselves. Neither one of us are perfect, but we trust each other in our motives, love and sacrifice.
    Fast-forward roughly 2 and 1/12 years later...........My girlfriend is informed by her daughter that she wants to live with her grandmother.  She's 17 and for intent on moving out citing that she does not feel safe at home.  Knowing that she could not be safer, my girlfriend refuses.  Not long afterward, after spending time at her grandmother's house, my girlfriend is refused when trying to pick up her daughter.  Her own mother is taking her daughter in against the wishes of her mother.  While at her grandparents she are informed that her daughter has come up with a memory of me raping her.  After pleading to her family and getting refused, my girlfriend lets her stay the night.  After taking off of work the next day, she went back to try and reason with the family. While while trying to locate her daughter, they came back to my girlfriend's house and took the two dogs belonging to my girlfriend.  After feeling betrayed by all events, my girlfriend had no other choice but to get the police involved.  Upon making statements to the police, my girlfriends daughter downgraded her claim to a satanic blood ritual and after some fair guidance from the police, it was decided that the family shouldn't become fractured from this.  My girlfriend promised not to cut off her mother's right to see her granddaughter in return for a promise that she would not try to hold the child there again.
     Two days later while my girlfriend is at church, her sister brings her daughter back to her grandmother's and for a second time refuses to let her leave with her mother.  Not wanting to do anything to further traumatize her daughter, she decides to let her spend some time with her grandmother to sort out her feelings while her mother gets some guidance from church counselors on how best to proceed.  While at work the family came back to my girlfriend's house and took her daughter's belongings to include her bed.  My girlfriend is left without her daughter, her two dogs, and a reasonable, factual explanation why her family has done this to her.

This is where we are at right now.  We have no ill will against her family, however a line is quickly being crossed between a very unfortunate misunderstanding to all out insanity.  I write this not as an accusatory letter but a simple statement of the facts as I have experienced them.  There are some things left out of this letter, however that is to cut down on the amount of reading.  This is a one time communication to whoever will read it.  A plea for help, if you will.  Again, I am not perfect by any means, however I have done nothing that I have been accused of.  I pray this reaches an open mind and a heart in search of healing.

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