First off: Thanks to Tish, Tracy, Doc, Addict and the rest of you for the words of support yesterday. I'm gonna be in a bit of a funk for a month or so as this thing uncurls itself. I don't like negative vibes but there is no way to go head to head in a court proceeding without negative vibes oozing out everywhere. I wish there was a way to secure Aspen's best interests without going this route but there simply isn't. It's been building to this point slowly for the last year and now it's here. The trick will be get from point A to point B as quickly and painlessly as possible. But when it's all done, when the smoke has cleared I will rest more peacefully knowing that I am the sole decision maker in my daughter's life and not some unwell, manipulative, delusional, parent wannabe (and I chose each of those words carefully, they are accurate).
Sunday morning I head to Chicago for a small Peace Corps reunion (10 years) and a Ben Harper concert. This is terrible timing. It was a hard decision to not cancel my plans. Aspen is staying at a friend's house for the next 3 days while I'm away (her mother is not in a position - or a home for that matter - to watch her). I am making every effort to keep Aspen's life at my house as normal and routine as possible but this little trip had been months in the making. I look more forward to getting back into town where I can pick her up and tuck her in in her own bed again then fall asleep knowing she is safe in the room next to me than I am to the trip itself.
Hopefully when the dust settles, there is no change in Aspen's daily life and her mother will use this as a giant wake up call rather than a call to arms.