Sunday, October 19, 2008

October Bead Journal Project (BJP)


"Walking a new path". I think that sounds better than "Walking away from the heartache".

My heart is so very heavy today, I'll share as much as I can...

There were many questions rolling around in my mind as I beaded up this square. All surrounding my son and granddaughter. In addition to all she has had to endure up to now, so much has happened this past year with her and around her at her mother's house. Things seriously escalated in the last 6 weeks - it is still hard for me to grasp and understand.

The short story... the mother was arrested for felony domestic battery (among several other felony charges) for holding a gun to the head of her husband (in front of her 3 children). She spent several days in jail before one of her neighbors bailed her out. In the meantime my son took his daughter to his house and filed for an emergency change of custody order, with the hope and intention of keeping his daughter in a safer environment. He got her enrolled in a new school and she began a regular schedule of sleeping, eating and just being a kid. She seemed to change before my eyes, she appeared to be happier, lighter in spirit and much more like a little girl again. It has been such a joy to witness.

My son and the girl's mother went before the judge about 2 weeks ago regarding the temporary change of custody. He heard both sides and talked to my granddaughter separately. We received the ruling late Saturday - she is to go back with her mother immediately.

I don't think I could be more heartbroken. I see/hear my son's anguish and I feel my own. I try really hard not to imagine what an evening is like in that house. At times it is too much to process. The way the court sees it - the step dad is now out of the house and the mother is out of jail, so no emergency exists. It's a shame they don't look any deeper than that even when presented with a mountain of evidence about the unstable environment.

As I was beading this piece, I was sure it would end up being titled "Walking on sunshine" because I was pretty sure the ruling would go in the favor of my son and the judge would make what I thought was the obvious choice for my granddaughter and her best interests.

I don't make it a practice of sharing so much of my personal life and especially the sad moments, but I am feeling quite raw and unfiltered right now.

Let's move on to the details of this page - I'm sure you noticed the those awesome feet, right? They are raku style pottery by Lisa Peters. She makes the coolest stuff. And it just so happens, she is currently having a wonderful end of summer sale in her Etsy store.

The sequins are vintage and so incredibly beautiful in person. They were a bit hard to photograph, but I think you get the idea. And for those that love to see the stitching, I've included a photo of that for you (note - both photos are clickable for a larger view)



The beaded part of this piece is 3 inches by 3 inches and will be sewn together with the other 11 pieces when complete to make a mini beaded quilt.

28 comments:

Hélène H said...

It is a very beautiful page Grace.

I send you lots of love.

Henrysmomsmusings said...

Grace, I am so sorry to hear about your son and granddaughter. I cannot understand what the judge was thinking. I will keep your family in my thoughts.
Your October project is very unusual. I like what you've done with the feet and I really like the background.
Hang in there!

Pursuing Art... said...

Oh Grace...I am so sorry. My heart aches for you all. I do not understand how a decision like this is made when it is obvious that the child is in an unstable, unhealthy, and unsafe environment. I hope she knows how to get help if she needs it and if she is jeopardized further, I would hope the decision for her well-being would be changed permanently! The one thing I do know is that she is very lucky to have you!

Your page beautifully conveys walking down the path you've been on and how that path has changed...

Know that you are all in my thoughts. Sending you a heartfelt hug...~Lisa

coral-seas said...

Hi Grace, I hope that the title of your piece turns out to be a prediction and your granddaughters family walk a different path with the Step father gone and the mother out of prison. If not now, perhaps the new path is at the next cross roads with a new Judge deciding. Stay strong, that is what your granddaughter needs from you now.

My best wishes to you, your son and your lovely granddaughter.

CA

Lynn said...

Grace, I am speechless. The legal system is almost entirely useless. This is horrible. A friend of mine went through something very similar to this. I do not for the life of me understand why the courts think the child is better off with the mother, especially when the child is a girl. Sometimes (like in this case) they just don't see the big picture. Many hugs to you and your family.

I hope this will be your only BJP square that holds such heartache.

Dulcey said...

I am so sorry that this was the ruling. I wish your BJP square could have reflected the meaning you wished....

Murphy said...

Oh Grace, I'm speachless, I don't understand how the judge could take such a decision...
I'm so sorry for all the heartache this situation has caused to all of you.
Big hugs,
Saby

beadbabe49 said...

So sorry to hear this sad news, grace...I hope it ultimately works out for your granddaughter's benefit.

KV said...

I well understand your feelings, Grace. Far too many children in bad situations these days and it is especially hard when it occurs to one's own kin.

Have heart -- I have the feeling that your son will win the court over some day soon.


Much love,

Kathy V in NM

lisa peters ART said...

Grace,
As I was reading your story I just thought there was going to be a different ending. I am so sorry for you, your son and especially your granddaughter. Why people cannot see the big picture I just dont know. Why the legal system works the way it does I do not know either. There are just too many I dont understands in this world and I am sorry that you, such a wonderful and creative person has to endure these things when your life should be filled with Happy Beading and sharing your talents, knowledge & love with your family whose spirits should be free to enjoy life and enjoy eachother. You are all in my prayers for a miraculous turn around in this situation and for the strength to endure whatever it takes to get family back together where they belong.
lisa peters

freebird said...

Hi Grace. I wish judges were held accountable for their decisions. They'd be a lot more careful then about sending kids back into bad situations. In my sister's case, their 13 year old (now 33) was having problems and put into a treatment center. The first counselor was listening to the grandmother and wanted the girl removed from the home. Thankfully the judge called in another counselor who interviewed all persons involved separately and had my sister and her mother-in-law write a letter to each other. After she read the grandmother's letter the girl ended up staying with her parents. She now dotes on her parents, lives near them seeing them every day. I tell you this as sometimes evil people do not get the final say. Sometimes love wins out and I really hope it does here. Your granddaughter evidently knows her father loves her and it will be a new path even if it seems like the old.

abeadlady said...

My heart goes out to you and your family. I have strong feelings that things will turn around for you soon. Prayers and positive thoughts go out for you daily.
Love the symbolism of your page.

Arline

bohemiangirl said...

Grace, I'm very sorry for you and your son. I understand the bewilderment you must feel at this decision because I went through a similar situation with my godson. After raising him for three of his first four years, a judge decided he needed to bond with his biological parents who didn't even visit him when they were court ordered to. They didn't take him to live with them for a year after the decision, which was great for me and him, but just reflected the awful decision the judge made. Let's hope that in the future, children are seen as real people rather than property of the parents.
bohemiangirl

Jacquie said...

Grace, I'm sorry to hear of your situation. At least you are there for your grandaughter and that will be possibly her saving grace. As I read your story I am taking care of a young boy (my neighbors grandson, 12 yrs old) who's mother died of a drug overdose, and father was in prison. He is a wonderful kid and it always amazes me how resilient these children are. They need extra doses of love and that is all you can do. You're in my thoughts.

Double Infinity said...

Tragedy seems to strike those who deserve it not, yet are capable of coping. It sickens me to learn that the law could be so absurdly applied. Kids might be resilient, but they also know the truth which favors your son and child. Hopes and prayers...

beadnik said...

This piece is quite beautiful and moving. I wish you and your family the best.

Tracey N. said...

UUUGGG, this is so darn typical of our court system its sickening. I cannot imagine how you, your son and grandchild are feeling. So many poor children are left to suffer at the hands of their parents. Lets hope that since the stepfather is gone (and stays gone) maybe the mother will rise to the occasion and do right by her child. Fingers crossed for you! Your page is lovely, heartfelt and so very moving. I hope someday you can rename it with the correct name. Beautiful work as always. On to better times now!

heidibeads said...

Grace, My heart goes out to you and your son and grand daughter. What a terrible thing to live through. I'm sorry. The page however is wonderful and I wish it was titled Walking in Sunshine. Hugs to you.

Marty S said...

I am so sorry to hear about this very difficult situation. I know that the many sympathetic feelings expressed in the comments will not lessen your concern about your granddaughter, but I hope they give you strength in the days to come. We are all wishing the best for your family.
Marty S
Crackpot Beader

a2susan said...

Dear Grace,
I'm so sorry for the terrible situation your family is dealing with. I hope your son can remain in close contact with his daughter, and that you can too. Just keep letting her know you are there and love her.

Lynn said...

Grace, as if you don't already have enough going on ....you've been tagged by me. If you can play, please check out my blog post of 10/21. :)

Robin said...

Bless you, Grace... It is clear, looking at this beautiful piece, that your love surrounds your granddaughter wherever she walks. As you were beading it, your heart and mind were filling every bead and sequins with hopes and prayers for a new and better path for both your granddaughter and son. Despite the judge's decision, your piece still carries all of your positive energy sending it forth into the universe and into their lives. I believe this. And therefore, I believe that ultimately the new path will be a good one.

Hugs, Robin A.

Carol said...

Grace:
It was heartbreaking to read this story. I never will understand why the courts leave children with the mother no matter what, giving the benefit of the doubt even when they are proven unstable. Your son is going to need your strength now. Its good to share the bad as well as the good, and as you can see you have a lot of support from your beading friends. Praying for you to St. Anne, patron saint to mothers.
Carol

Plays with Needles said...

It is times like these when you, as the grandmother and the mother, must walk with strength. I wish you tremendous fortitude, wisdom and courage as you continue to guide your family through this. Your feet are solidly planted and you are the tree on which they lean. May you be true and steadfast.

Dot said...

I am so sory to hear about your son and grand daughter. It seems so unfair. I will keep you and your fmaily in my heart for a swift resolution to this.

It sounds like your granddaughter would be much happier and safer with your son.

Your beaded page is beautiful Grace ; and even more beautiful and profound because of the feelings you have stitched into it.

Sending much love to you.

Dot xx

The Lone Beader said...

Wow, it came out great!

Nancy K. said...

Grace, my thoughts are with you. It is a beautiful page. As I recall your beautiful purple hand was that of a grandaughter, is this by chance the same grandaughter?

GraceBeading said...

Honestly... I can't thank all of you enough for your thoughtful posts, your private notes, your encouragement and support. We continue to battle issues surrounding this whole mess and I only hope (with all my might) that all will work out as is best for my granddaughter.

Leaves of Grass

This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul, and your very flesh shall be a great poem and have the richest fluency not only in its words but in the silent lines of its lips and face and between the lashes of your eyes and in every motion and joint of your body - Walt Whitman