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Sunday, December 30, 2012

Happy New Year!!!

Interesting ... I received an Order in the mail from the Judge that on 12/17/2012 I was represented by an attorney that I don't know (other then her address is the same as my attorney) for a compliance motion hour - that I didn't know about!! However, I still haven't received the funds. Is this really a reflection of our justice system?!!?!

At this point, I feel hopeless. I decided to contact the Bar Association, Better Business Bureau, and the local news media Trouble Shooters for guidance. It's a shame that it came to this. Guess I still don't know how to judge a person's character. Shame on me!

The kids seem to be getting healthier and that's more important than anything. It snowed in Louisville, so we spent the day yesterday playing in it. It was such a blast. My good friend from Florida was in town for the holidays and we enjoyed some time with her as well.

Even though people try to rain on my parade, I won't let them! I'm going to try to shine bright like a ray of sunshine. Or at least try too. (smile)

The encouragement I'm receiving is awesome! Thanks for helping me get through this! Our total hits are now at 22,139.

I will keep you posted on the outcome. If I don't get back on here, HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!!

God Bless and Much Love

Friday, December 28, 2012

Moving Through Christmas -

The trial that was supposed to happen, never did. Apparently, the lawyers came up with a plan and whether I agreed to it or not, didn't really matter. It was a done deal. Brent came up with four thousand dollars and the remainder would arrive the following Monday. However, it finally arrived the following Friday (12/14/2012) at my attorney's office.

The secretary called and told me it just arrived, but she had to leave and would mail the checks and needed to know when I could make a payment. This is where the story gets interesting. Brent was ordered to pay my attorney $5k, which he did. The remainder of the balance I would be responsible for. Lacy, the secretary, told me it was a little over $3k. When I heard that amount, it was obvious that it upset me. Here it was Christmas, I have three children to buy for, and my parents have been picking up the bill when I couldn't afford it.

Over the weekend, I worked everything out to where I could get the check, put it in the bank, and pay my attorney off, and move on with my life. But, that's not how it went. On the 20th, I sent a message stating that I have not received the checks ... here's the following correspondence via email:

Him: Not until we can sit down and discuss my fee.

Me: I understand that you want and need to be paid. However, considering I never signed a contract - I don't know what you get paid. Also, keep in mind that I've only seen one statement and that was the one you put in front of me during trial. So, I would think its only fair that I receive one immediately so that I know what I owe.
I was hoping that after speaking with Lacy Friday, you were going to send me a copy. I never received that nor the check. Please keep in mind that as a single mother, I do not have that kind of money laying around. Therefore, I was waiting on the check so I could get it to the bank so it would clear before I met with you over the weekend.
Also, I personally never agreed to the latest order, if I remember correctly, it was you not wanting to get up that early. I would have never put that much trust into a crack head. I have three children who depend on me. I'm trying to get my life back in order and give back my parents the money that I borrowed when Brent didn't pay child support. They are on a fixed income and can't afford to keep dishing out. Besides that, Christmas being five days away. I was depending on that money to purchase their gifts. You saw my financial records - I have nothing. But, I made arrangements to pay you in full and call it a day. It saddens me to think you are going to dangle these checks now like carrots. I really thought we were better than that.
Please send me a detailed billing, then we can meet at my bank to deposit the checks since both signatures are required. I will authorize my bank to setup a bank draft to your account as soon as the checks are cleared. This meeting needs to be mutually agreed upon with no charges incurred. After this issue is settled, we can suspend any communication with the other party unless cleared by myself. After the New Year, we need to discuss your hourly and court appearance rates for future business.
Thank you for your support and guidance during such a trying time in my children and my life.
Him: You are misconstruing everything. I wanted to meet with you asap BECAUSE of Christmas and BECAUSE I am willing to accept substantially less the the total bill. But after your accusations, after I worked for you for months for nothing, I am nothing short of amazed by your tone. I have been trying to arrange a meeting since before my surgery on Dec 11.
Me: I'm not asking for a hand out, and never have. I have been straight forward with you from the get go and appreciate what you did. Just send me the statement and let's put it behind us. As far as the tone, I could say the same thing about you.
As you know I've only worked for this company since October. On several occasions I had to ask off for court appearances, as well as for sick children (who has been canceled from Brent's insurance). I come in at 6am and never really know what time I get off - balancing that with going to school full time and taking care of my children, my schedule is very tight. That's the best I can offer is meeting on the weekend. I can't afford to lose this job, and I can't afford any more debt.
Him: When can we meet this weekend?
Me: My bank closes at noon on Saturday's.
Him: Then we meet 10 am Sat or this evening?
Me: 10am at the bank? I still haven't received a statement?
Him: Please confirm when you would like to meet.
Me: I can't confirm. At this point, it will have to be after the new year. All 3 kids have been in and out of the hospital and now I have to figure out a way to make Christmas happen for them. That's my priority! Even if I met with you today, it would be pointless because the check, even though it's a cashier check, still takes at least one business day to clear.
Actually, I'm still confused on why we even have to meet. I was in your office on 12/4 collecting my files, why wasn't this discussed then?? I'm going to pay you, all I'm asking for is a detailed summary since I have NEVER seen one. I don't know what the big deal is. So, if you want to hold the checks until then - so be it. I can't deal with it now. There's too much going on!!! Its the same story with my personal belongings from Brent, the children being insured, and whatever else. The whole system is a joke!
Merry Christmas!
Him: You are making this far more difficult and dramatic than is necessary. The check is drawn on a local Credit union. We have verified the funds are there. They are open until 6. When can you meet me there?  Lacy will be emailing bill w/in the next half hour.
[In the meantime, the hospital calls me back to tell me Casie's culture grew something and came back positive for strep. All three children were running extremely high temperatures, and it was round two at the hospital with Marissa who then tested positive for RSV. I was terrified to say the least since the only thing I really knew about it was that my brother-in-law's grandson died from it. Not to mention, picking up presciptions was a blast since Brent canceled the children's insurance.]
Next email was the first statement I saw .... totaling in at $4,649.26. The first thing I saw after skimming over it was a Certified Mail Fee for $92.00. Really?!? My mind at this point was literally all over the place.
Me: Wow! That's cute! That's quite a jump from the $3k I was told last Friday!! Nice!
Him: Wow! Last Friday I had not added on fees incurred since the end of July and wasn't going to. That's why I wanted to sit down and talk. But you chose this route instead. It is just sad.
I wanted to work out something fair to both of us.
[I'm thinking 'if he wanted to do that, then why didn't he just do it instead of add more stress to an already stressful situation'.]
Do you want to meet at 5/3 tomorrow am? I need to know so I can fetch the check from office
[These messages came at different times, but I was at the children's hospital at the time and chose not to deal with it then.]
OK. It is 8:15 on Friday evening. I am about to go to bed. I have heard nothing from you about getting your money to you in time for Christmas. I will be turning phone off. However if you leave me a message, email, text or phone I will get in the am in time to pick up check and meet you at 5/3.
Me: Marissa just got out of Kosair w/ RSV, the other 2 have strep among other things. The hospital wants us to be at the pediatrician in the morning. Their Saturday hours are 9am-noon. I won't know until I talk to them in the morning.
That was it .... never heard back - today is the 28th, still no checks, no personal belongings, and the children still have no insurance.
My kiddos still aren't 100%, but they are on the road to recovery. They were really bummed about missing Christmas parties at school and poor Casie wasn't able to be in the program either. They don't seem to ask about their Dad or even talk about him much for that matter. His mom sent them a Christmas card and they talked to her for a bit. She asked them if she could speak to me and they handed me the phone. It's been a long time since that happened, but she was nice and I reiterated the fact that her and her Michigan family are more then welcome to keep in contact with my kids if they choose to.
Christmas was interesting to say the least - a chair crashed while someone was sitting in it, the front porch caught on fire, Santa came for a visit w/ a feminine voice, you never know who's walking through the door next, but all in all, it was good because it was spent with family and friends. And most importantly, my children were happy!
All I know is 2013 HAS to be my year ... (smile)
We will see what turns out, in the meantime, enjoy the good people in your life. God Bless and Much Love!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Let Me Bring You Up to Speed ... CRASH!!!

Funny! I started to think about my LinkedIn account and everything clicked. A few months back, I kept getting request from Brent's "BIG DUMMY" friend. Obviously, I ignored them. However, last week - my phone started going crazy and requesting everyone in the "people you may know category". At first, I didn't care, because it was legit. I put my phone down and forgot about it. When I came back a few minutes later, it showed that "BIG DUMMY" was one of those requested. (In case you forgot, Big Dummy is Brent's roadie.) Yikes!!! I didn't want that to happen. This guy is 100% comparable to Brent. That's obviously why they are BFFs. Anyway, you put two and two together and you realize why that friendship works - their world must be so boring to have to revolve around mine. Oh well. It's flattering in a way.

Anyway, since we are on the subject of said person - I actually reached out to his (Brent's friend, "BIG DUMMY") ex-wife to give my condolences for an unfortunate occurrence that took place. She was so sweet and it was nice to catch up with her. Now, I wish that I would have been friends with her vs. his big, tall lanky ass. But, whatever. He's out of my life, so no biggie.

I got a lot of different feedback after my last post. There was concerns from ones who fear for mine and my families safety. Ones who were shocked of how history repeated itself. There was encouragement to keep up what I'm doing. Ones who were angry that some one can get by with so much. There were ones who thought it was hysterical. And there was some who were disgusted with what they read.You mix all those emotions together and that's how I felt.

In a way, I thought maybe I put too much out there. But, I am committed to this blog and if I didn't share it, I wouldn't be being honest. I am saddened that our justice system allows this behavior to continue to keep happening. But, I'm even more saddened that our streets are filled with junkies like this. At one point, I felt that there would always be a tiny, minuet spot in my heart for him. But, that's been filled and voided. I don't want to say that I hate the dude, because hate is such a strong word. But, I strongly dislike him and hope that I never have to see him again. When asked about him, I seem to automatically give the same response "he's just a dumb ass". Maybe that's all I feel about him. I don't know. And, frankly, I don't even care.

My friends jumped my ass for even speaking to Kara. This was the first email I received from her in a long time. We don't talk on a regular basis, or anything. And probably will never speak again. But, I do feel sorry for her. I can relate, I can understand, but that's about it. We had too much shared ground in common and there's no reason for us to be "friends", so to speak. So, that's the extent to that.When it comes to friends, God broke the mode when it came to mine. I'm truly blessed when it comes to that department.

However, on Thanksgiving morning I received one final email from her. It was simply a copy of the Emergency Protective Order she filed in the state of Illinois against Brent. A court hearing will be held there on the 11th.

Last week was a hearing for the Domestic Violence Order violation that I took out here in Kentucky. Guess what?? Pushed again to next month. Honestly, I knew it would happen. Or should I say I wasn't surprised. This is the same road I've traveled in this case. However, today was the day for the family court business in regards to holding him in contempt for not (1) paying maintenance (he's three months behind); (2) returning my personal items within 15 days of the previous order; (3) paying the purge amount of $8,115.50 by October 17. My aunt and uncle were going to meet me there to offer their support.

My co-workers and I have formed a bond and they knew about today, so they were very supportive. So, it was easy for me to share my anxiety about what the trial would hold. When the time folded out, I arrived in the parking garage in plenty of time. To my surprise, when I rounded the second floor there before me was Brent and "Big Dummy". I could tell you the million things that started racing through my head, but all of that was shot to hell when I freakin crashed my vehicle. Yes, you read that right ... I crashed! I was on the phone with my mom who heard the whole thing go down and started telling me to stop the vehicle. I explained, "I can't mom - these two nuts are right here and I fear for my life with both of them!!!" I knew my tire was flat at that point, so I hurried along to the next floor. This all was happening so fast. My mom then said "Hang up and I'll call your aunt.". I was so upset and embarrassed at that point, I begged "No, please just stay on the phone with me!" I rounded the next turn and it was, no joke, like a shining light shining on my aunt and uncle two cars up. To express my gratitude to them for all they have did, there just wouldn't be enough minutes in a day. They jumped in my car for me to go park, calmed me down, and off to court we headed.

As the elevator quickly made it's arrival to the sixth floor of the Family Court building, there sat Brent and his "buddy". It wasn't long until the attorney's arrived and the sheriff was calling our name. After we were sworn in, Brent's attorney explained that the original attorney was out sick and that he wasn't familiar with the case and asked for it to be pushed back. My testimony was heard and the judge ruled for the continuance to take place Thursday at 8am.

After that, my uncle changed the tire for me and off I headed to my attorney's office. When I arrived, she had already received an email from Brent's attorney saying that I could retrieve my items this evening. I was like "Um, no! That guy can't tell the truth to save his life - I don't believe he has it. Let's call his bluff and have him bring it to the trial Thursday in front of the judge." ... she agreed.

Riding on a spare sucks.  It was a time that I used to collect my thoughts. Sure, I was totally embarrassed, but I couldn't escape the obvious - Brent's demeanor. There's no other way to describe it then, he looked like someone took an air hose, shoved it right up his ass, and blew his head up. To say "bloating" would be the understatement of the year. In addition to that, every hair on that guy's body had turned to white. This 45 year old man was now starting to resemble the look of an 80 year old. He still had that creepy way about him. As for someone who always brings it to my attention that I'm fat - he doesn't have a leg to stand on anymore. He's not fat, but he's not healthy. The drugs have reached a new high on this man. And if his "friend" doesn't realize it, then he's not as smart as he thinks he is. The old saying comes to mind, "people that live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones" ... or some shit like that. But, eventually I made my way back to work.

I shared my story with my co-workers and of course, they laughed their ass off at my dumb ass. I was like "Yep - now I can be fat and can't drive!" Hey, it made for interesting topics to say the least. It wasn't long before my attorney called and explained that Brent's team has made an "offer" that he would pay me half of the money to delay the sentencing. I interrupted with "HELL NO". He made his bed, now he has to lay in it. I'm finished bailing his sorry ass out. This is not about me - it's about our children! And they deserve every penny of it. If they don't get it, his crack pipe will! However, the judge was very stern and assured him that he would be taken into custody immediately. Now, we sit and wait .... until Thursday!

Maybe this is what the dude needs, because at this point there's not many options left for him. I will try to be the better person and hope for the best. But, at this point I've been through so much - I'm not sure what to think.

If you are reading this and are currently using drugs, go back to the beginning and re-read this downward spiral that this man has taken and how it has affected so many. Rethink it and live life - don't be a schmuck to let someone dictate it for you.

There's a lot more ground to cover, but I'm going to have to share that at the next post. In the meantime, thank you for supporting my blog - we are now getting closer to 21,000 hits. God Bless and Much Love!