<![CDATA[a mother's musings - A Mother's Musings]]>Mon, 04 Jan 2016 03:53:19 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[Another New Year]]>Sun, 03 Jan 2016 01:41:44 GMThttp://amothersmusings.weebly.com/a-mothers-musings/another-new-yearI have spent 6 1/2 months being "legally" and forcibly separated from my 7 year old daughter. I am so ashamed of my country for allowing such a thing. I know it is the fault of the people, who have allowed the corruption to sneak in, I am very, very concerned about not just my situation, but also for the future of my children and grandchildren. This is an election year, and it needs to be a year of change.  

I have 2 videos on youtube under "Free Dilara" and I have a facebook page titled "Free Dilara Gider". I am using "free" as a verb at this point, but I hope that it will be used as an adjective soon. We have to fight not only to restore her freedom, but also to maintain it. 

I am so disappointed in Dilara's father. I just hope that he is not beyond help. Of course, with God, nobody is too far gone, as long as they live. 

My main focus is to get my daughter back.  I am also working on doing whatever I can to make the world a safer place for everyone else's children.

We need judicial reform NOW. Mostly, people need to wake up and realize what is going on in the world around them. I had no idea things were so corrupt and I never thought judges had such contempt for the flag and the Constitution. 

Today my brother and I replaced the alternator in my car. I was thinking of how I wish Dilara had been here to observe. I want her to learn practical skills and to be as self-sufficient as possible. And the more you can do, the more service you can be to others.  I hate that they took home ec and shop out of schools. I hate that so few children have a full-time parent, and a 2 parent household. I hate that so few people attend church on a regular basis. I hate that so few people know their neighbors. 

My Christmas gift from my brother was a tenor ukelele.  It is amazing. I can't wait to show Dilara. I learned several chords the second day I had it. It is wonderfully portable. Everybody should play a musical instrument.  I have an electric piano keyboard, but I haven't got it set up. I need to rearrange furniture to get it into a good spot. A ukelele is wonderfully portable. I practiced in the car to and from Kentucky yesterday when my brother and I went to visit my aunt.  It is very good for the brain to play a musical instrument. I want to make sure I spend time daily in practice. My brain has been really stressed out lately.

Another thing that will help my brain is if I start back bellydancing. I lost my bellydance teacher a year and a half ago, but I have some videos. Exercise is very important.  I especially enjoy bellydance. I have gained a few pounds since I lost my daughter, and I think I will lose them if I get more active.  

The past couple of months have been pretty hard for me. The last time I went on court to try to get the order of protection done away with, or modified so I could see Dilara was October 30. I even had a lawyer go to court with me.  He thought it would be an "easy win" to get the judge to modify the order of protection to accommodate the custody orders of juvenile court. Dilara's dad's lawyer made such a big fuss.  I really think she should have her license suspended. She has gone against the law so many times, but the judges go right along with her.  

Judge Phillip Robinson in Third Circuit Court is the one who issued the order of protection. Dilara's dad and his lawyer lied so much about so many things, and the judge was in such a rush at the hearing June 15 that I knew he was not going to give me the opportunity to straighten things out.  October 30 he told me to file a petition to get my "day in court", but I have had 2 months to write it up, but  it still isn't done. I was terribly sick for about 6 weeks after that hearing. Stress makes my fibromyalgia/chronic fatigue worse. My mood has been good, though. I thank God for that.

It is really hard for me to be concise, and I have to much to tell the judge. I am going to try to get this written up and filed Monday or Tuesday. Then the other side will have 30 days to answer before we can set it for trial.  I cannot for the life of me understand why Dilara's dad is spending so much time and energy fighting me in court to deprive me and Dilara of our rights that are supposed to be protected by the Constitution. I am sure he has spent several thousands of dollars. I will never, ever give up on getting my daughter back. 

I am also going to ask that Dilara's dad be held in contempt for fraud upon the court and perjury. I doubt that anybody will address that. I have asked from the beginning that he be required to tell the truth and to stop interfering in my relationship with my daughter.  So far, nobody has found any fault in him, whatsoever. Of course, I have not attacked him. I just want him to leave us alone. I have no desire, whatsoever, to deprive him of any of his constitutionally protected rights.  I would hope that if I asked a judge to deprive him of any of his constitutionally protected rights, they would deny my request. They probably WOULD deny me, since I don't have a lawyer. The lawyer opposing a pro se litigant seems to get almost everything they ask for, no matter how contrary to the law and common good it is. 

I have so many things I want to do with my daughter. It is so sad to think of all we have missed out on due to the hardness of her father's heart.  All I know to do is to keep praying and keep working as hard as I can to get the courts to right the wrongs.

I have filed for an appeal of the custody decision and will be in court January 21 with the judge who wrote it. There are several things she did not address and that she needs to be made aware of. I am also supposed to have 26 counts of contempt against me, but I don't expect they will be heard that day.  
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<![CDATA[Appropriate Topics of Conversation with Children]]>Fri, 12 Jun 2015 02:12:39 GMThttp://amothersmusings.weebly.com/a-mothers-musings/appropriate-topics-of-conversation-with-childrenIn my ongoing courtroom custody battle with the father of my 6 1/2 year old, I have become increasingly aware of how narrow-minded and judgmental other people and adults can be.  I am used to  people having different opinions, but I am not used to total strangers to me and my children IMPOSING their beliefs and their attitudes and opinions onto me.  It is one thing to share your thoughts, but it is a dangerous thing to deprive a parent of fundamental rights and liberties without showing any harm to the child.

I was absolutely SHOCKED  to learn that 2 of my child's teachers and the assistant principal of the school had been talking about me behind my back and that the assistant principal had even considered reporting me to the Department of Children's Services because I didn't interact with my child as she would.  Specifically, she thought it was HORRIBLE  that I had openly and honestly discussed the circumstances of my child's conception and how her father wanted me to deliberately terminate the pregnancy, and I prayed for God to let me have a miscarriage because we both wanted her to die before she was born.  I understand that that is something that a lot of people would not discuss with a preschooler.  But I don't understand why anyone would think that I should limit my conversations with my child to what anyone else thinks is "appropriate."  I don't think there is anyone in the world who knows my child better than me. I have spent many thousands of hours listening to and observing my child.  I consider myself the highest human authority on what is appropriate for my child.

The law is clearly on my side.  This is America, for goodness sake.  Why in the world would ANYONE think that the mother of a healthy, happy, well-adjusted, articulate and expressive child (that is how you can tell if a child is healthy and happy and well-adjusted, by observing and listening to them, rather than making assumptions without personal knowledge of the individual and the situation) is being negatively impacted by the Mother's interactions with the child?

In Hawk v. Hawk, Supreme Court of Tennessee, June 1, 1993
"The parents initially asserted the unconstitutionality of T.C.A. § 36-6-301 (1985) under the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution. This Court has asked that the parties also address the constitutionality of the statute under the Tennessee Constitution, with particular reference to Davis v. Davis, 842 S.W.2d 588 (Tenn. 1992), the case which acknowledged a right to privacy under the Tennessee Constitution. In light of this right to privacy, we believe that when no substantial harm threatens a child's welfare, the state lacks a sufficiently compelling justification for the infringement on the fundamental right of parents to raise their children as they see fit. Thus, we find the statute to be unconstitutional under Article I, Section 8 of the Tennessee Constitution, as applied to this married couple, whose fitness as parents is unchallenged. This result relieves us of the necessity of addressing the constitutionality of the statute under the federal constitution and, accordingly, we pretermit this issue.

In determining the validity of the statute, we look first to the nature of the right at stake. Tennessee law has long held that

... a parent is entitled to the custody, companionship, and care of the child, and should not be deprived thereof except by due process of law. It is a natural right, but not an inalienable one. The parents are trusted with the custody of the child upon the idea that under the instincts of parental devotion it is best for the child.State ex rel. Bethell v. Kilvington, 100 Tenn. 227, 236, 45 S.W. 433, 435 (1898). This Court has further held that

578*578 [t]he relations which exist between parent and child are sacred ones... . The right to the society of the child exists in its parents; the right to rear it, to its custody, to its tutorage, the shaping of its destiny, and all of the consequences that naturally follow from the relationship are inherently in the natural parents, and they cannot be deprived of these rights without notice, and upon some ground which affects materially the future of the child.In re Knott, 138 Tenn. 349, 355, 197 S.W. 1097, 1098 (1917)Knott thus upheld the custodial rights of a natural father who had not been proven unfit against prospective adoptive parents in far "better financial condition." Id. Hence, although this Court has not previously determined that the state constitution protects a parent's right to rear a child, the right has long been protected from state interference, except where the child's welfare is "materially" jeopardized.

Indeed, the right to rear one's children is so firmly rooted in our culture that the United States Supreme Court has held it to be a fundamental liberty interest protected by the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.[3] In Meyer v. Nebraska,262 U.S. 390, 399, 43 S.Ct. 625, 626, 67 L.Ed. 1042 (1923), the United States Supreme Court held that

[w]hile this court has not attempted to define with exactness the liberty thus guaranteed [by the Fourteenth Amendment], ... . [w]ithout doubt, it denotes not merely freedom from bodily restraint but also the right of the individual to contract, to engage in any of the common occupations of life, to acquire useful knowledge, to marry, establish a home and bring up children, to worship God according to the dictates of his own conscience, and generally to enjoy those privileges long recognized at common law as essential to the orderly pursuit of happiness by free men.The Supreme Court has reaffirmed this right on many occasions. In Pierce v. Society of Sisters, 268 U.S. 510, 534-5, 45 S.Ct. 571, 573-74, 69 L.Ed. 1070 (1925), the Court voided a law that prohibited parents from choosing private education over public schooling for their children, reasoning that the law would "unreasonably interfere[] with the liberty of parents ... to direct the upbringing and education of [their] children." Similarly, in Wisconsin v. Yoder, 406 U.S. 205, 207, 92 S.Ct. 1526, 1542, 32 L.Ed.2d 15 (1972), the Court upheld the right of Amish parents to withdraw their children from public schools after the eighth grade in order to educate them according to Amish beliefs. The Court found that "[t]he history and culture of Western civilization reflect a strong tradition of parental concern for the nurture and upbringing of their children." Id. at 232, 92 S.Ct. at 1541. The Court acknowledged that these rights are "subject to limitation ... if it appears that parental decisions will jeopardize the health or safety of the child, or have a potential for significant social burdens." Id.at 233-4, 92 S.Ct. at 1542. However, finding no such threat, the Court permitted the parent's choice, basing its holding on First Amendment protections and "the fundamental interest of parents, as contrasted with that of the State." Id. at 232, 92 S.Ct. at 1542. The right to rear one's child is, therefore, heavily protected by federal constitutional jurisprudence.

Although often expressed as a "liberty" interest, the protection of "childrearing autonomy"[4] reflects the Court's larger concern with privacy rights for the family. The Court in Prince v. Massachusetts, 321 U.S. 158, 166, 64 S.Ct. 438, 442, 88 L.Ed. 645 (1944), acknowledged the existence of a "private realm of family life which the state cannot enter." Protecting family privacy, the Court in Moore v. City of East Cleveland, 431 U.S. 494, 97 S.Ct. 1932, 52 L.Ed.2d 531 (1977), held unconstitutional a housing ordinance that limited the definition 579*579 of a family. The Court upheld the family's right to define its members, insisting that "the Constitution protects the sanctity of the family... ." Id. at 503, 97 S.Ct. at 1938. The Court referred not only to the line of cases such as Meyer, Yoder, and Pierce, that establish "traditional parental authority," but also to the "freedom of [procreational] choice" cases, such asRoe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113, 93 S.Ct. 705, 35 L.Ed.2d 147 (1973), and Griswold v. Connecticut, 381 U.S. 479, 85 S.Ct. 1678, 14 L.Ed.2d 510 (1965),[5] which establish "zones of privacy" based on the array of privacy protections in the Bill of Rights.[6]The Court's protection of parental rights thus evidences a deeper concern for the privacy rights inherent in the federal Constitution.

Tennessee's historically strong protection of parental rights and the reasoning of federal constitutional cases convince us that parental rights constitute a fundamental liberty interest under Article I, Section 8 of the Tennessee Constitution.[7] In Davis v. Davis, 842 S.W.2d 588 (1992), we recognized that although "[t]he right to privacy is not specifically mentioned in either the federal or the Tennessee state constitution, ... there can be little doubt about its grounding in the concept of liberty reflected in those two documents." Id. at 598. We explained that "the notion of individual liberty is ... deeply embedded in the Tennessee Constitution ...," and we explicitly found that "[t]he right to privacy, or personal autonomy (`the right to be let alone'), while not mentioned explicitly in our state constitution, is nevertheless reflected in several sections of the Tennessee Declaration of Rights... ." Id. at 599-600. Citing a wealth of rights that protect personal privacy, rights such as the freedom of worship, freedom of speech, freedom from unreasonable searches and seizures, and the regulation of the quartering of soldiers, we had "no hesitation in drawing the conclusion that there is a right of individual privacy guaranteed under and protected by the liberty clauses of the Tennessee Declaration of Rights." Id. Finding the right to procreational autonomy to be part of this right to privacy, we noted that the right to procreational autonomy is evidence by the same concepts that uphold "parental rights and responsibilities with respect to children." Id. at 601. Thus, we conclude that the same right to privacy espoused in Davis fully protects the right of parents to care for their children without unwarranted state intervention.

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<![CDATA[Bill Cosby ]]>Sat, 15 Nov 2014 12:47:32 GMThttp://amothersmusings.weebly.com/a-mothers-musings/bill-cosbyBill Cosby... I just love him to death and respect him in so many ways, but I am really sad to see his dark side. I was so disappointed years ago to find out that he had cheated on his lovely wife, I think the overwhelming majority of us has done or thought of something we would rather other people not know about. And if you haven't, you are probably in denial. People have to work hard to avoid sin. And the easier it is to feel like we are getting away with it, the less incentive we have to avoid it. God has always been pretty quick to show me that he's not letting me get away with ANYTHING, and I'm glad. Too bad for all the women who were taken advantage of by Bill Cosby. If someone had not "looked the other way" from the beginning, I think he would have stopped a lot sooner. I never was a Jerry Sandusky fan, but I kind of have the same sad, sick feeling about Bil Cosby that I felt about Jerry Sandusky. We all have different weaknesses, and I don't ever want to judge anyone too harshly. People need to stop sinning, and we need to help each other avoid temptation and we need to keep each other accountable. I hope I am never in a position where my "looking the other way" encourages someone to continue in sin. I believe Christians can and do sin, but you can't make a habit of it and think you're okay with God. Bill Cosby has professed to be a Christian. He has done a lot of good. BUT, that isn't enough to keep you on God's good side. Sin separates us from God, even when we think we're "getting away" with it. Please, please, please speak out against sinful behavior and support others in avoiding it. You may not get someone to change, but at least you won't be guilty of condoning their behavior.]]><![CDATA[Parent-Teacher Conference]]>Wed, 05 Nov 2014 06:22:09 GMThttp://amothersmusings.weebly.com/a-mothers-musings/parent-teacher-conferenceToday I had a conference with the principal and my daughter''s kindergarten teacher, her reading teacher, and the principal. The assistant principal was going to come, but had to have some dental emergency. Dilara and her dad were there with us.

I have homeschooled Dilara her whole life. She attended private preschool 2 days a week from the time she was 2 till she was a little over 5 1/2. I don't think private preschool was of any benefit. My 2 older children didn't attend any preschool at all, other than homeschool. ]]>
<![CDATA[Family Day at the Fair]]>Sun, 14 Sep 2014 19:35:44 GMThttp://amothersmusings.weebly.com/a-mothers-musings/family-day-at-the-fairWe had a Family day at the fair yesterday. I had hoped to pull Dilara out of school on Tuesday to take her to the Field Trip day at the fair---rides were closed, but exhibits were open. I had a fibromyalgia flare, and couldn't take her with the homeschool group. It really takes 2 days to see everything. Dilara outlasted my brother as well as Callie and Noah, and she didn't want to go home when I said it was absolutely too late.

We went at 3 till 10. We are usually in bed by 8:30. It was not too crowded till later, but the rides looked prettier when they were all lit up at night.

Dilara really revealed herself in her choices of activities. She spent much more time with the educational things, like the livestock and Mr. Bond's Science, etc. Her favorite 'amusement' was the funhouse, which she went through 4 times straight. She rode one ride in the 'thrill zone' with her teen-aged brother and sister and it was 'too high' and after that, she carefully considered which rides would best suit her.

There is a HUGE difference in the experience of "riding" and sitting passively in a seat, buckled in and going along a path pre-determined by others, and exploring a funhouse at your own pace. I am not the LEAST surprised that she kept going back for more treks through the funhouse, where I am sure she experienced or noticed something slightly different every time and was able to go at her own pace somewhat.  There were kids behind her and there wasn't always room for them to squeeze by, but she went through it enough times to be sure she had gotten all there was to get out of the places she might have been rushed through. Kind of like "working to mastery" in homeschool.   I am also not surprised that she didn't choose to ride ANY of the rides more than once. Nothing new to see, nothing new to learn, too much unexplored territory out there!

During her learning time at home, she is very good at selecting her own activities that cover a ride range of subjects, and she knows how to decide what is appropriately challenging. She used to get frustrated when she couldn't do something. Now, she may take on something a bit too advanced, but it is okay if she decides that she is not ready for it. She does 'too easy' work 'just for fun' and that is fine with me. She sees for herself the value in review, in how it helps with retention.  I could not have asked for better student to homeschool while I deal with chronic illness. The only trouble she gives me is when I tell her what to do, but there isn't too much resistance, and I know she is just 'switching gears' between 'self-directed' and 'teacher directed' activity.

The ONE thing that surprized me was how interested she was in the livestock competition. I was grateful for the chance to sit down! She really wanted to try to milk a cow, and to bring home two brown and white 'dutch' rabbits and a small duck and some chickens. She looked at a game cock and said it reminded her of 'The Little Red Hen' and I was pleased at every turn.

I really wish Dilara's dad would trust me. I have tried to tell everyone I am the world's expert on Dilara and I know better than anyone how to make sure her educational and other developmental needs are being met. Her time is MUCH better spent outside of the institutional setting. It grieves me that she is being forced to settle for less than the best, even if it is a temporary arrangement. Dilara will never be able to get back the hours lost this year in kindergarten, and I will never be able to get back my parenting time that has been taken from me. I'm not saying it is all a miserable experience for her, because it isn't. I'm just saying that she should have the right to the best and most appropriate educational experience that is available to her, and I should have the right to do what I am best at, rather than having my hands tied by people who don't have the facts and understanding to make a decision that is truly in Dilara's best interest.]]>
<![CDATA[A new approach to an old relationship]]>Wed, 13 Aug 2014 17:45:17 GMThttp://amothersmusings.weebly.com/a-mothers-musings/a-new-approach-to-an-old-relationshipWell, sometimes I have to go through a few "false starts" before I get going down the new path I want.

It is very hard for me to go against what I think is the way something "SHOULD" be. You can teach on old dog new tricks, it just may take a bit longer to unlearn old habits.

I have for a LONG time--like 2 1/2 years, tried  to not have a co-parenting relationship. But I have worked against myself towards that end because of my firm belief that a child deserves parents who love each other, or at least can get along with each other.  The huge sticking point has been the fact that we have joint legal custody. That implies joint decision making on important issues.  Dilara's dad has said over and over again that he doesn't want to discuss anything with me. Yet, he is the one who has complained to the court that I refuse to consider his opinion about the things he doesn't want to discuss with me. I have already asked for sole custody, or at least sole decision making authority,  but only after he did. I don't think either of us can convince a judge, at this point, to change anything about our custody arrangement.  The law is pretty strict about requiring "material change in circumstance" that affects the child in a meaningful way. At this point, Dilara has not been affected in any meaningful way by her parents' inability to communicate and make joint decisions. 

Our custody arrangement can stay the same, with us simply going to court to break the tie when we can't agree on something. If we start going to court a lot, that may get tiresome after a while. 

One HUGE thing that happened this year is that Dilara's dad and I have shown that we can all sit together as a family for brief periods of time, on special occasions. We are able to communicate well enough to adhere to our agreement, other than the implied joint decision making part. I, at this point, expect that we will be able to both attend school functions, graduations, weddings, etc. as a family.  I know people who have been married to each other who can't even do that, so for us to have had our child out of wedlock, and never have been "in love" with each other from the start, I think that is pretty good.  


So, I have been trying to a week now to work as though I already have sole legal custody and there is no need for me to communicate with Dilara's dad beyond basic scheduling, and letting him know what we need. No need for discussion! What a relief!  

There have been several times when I have been stonewalled and I have said, "Fine! I'll just pretend I have sole custody and decision making authority and I don't NEED to talk to you about anything!"  But, until now, I have always kept him "in the loop."  I am retraining myself to not share with him anything about DIlara's experiences when she is with me.  She is old enough now that  he can ask her about her day. She has a blog that we put updates on. He is free to ask me questions. But I am not going to send him texts of cute things she says or does. I am not going to send pictures to his phone of cool things she does. I am not going to send him reminders of things. 

I am going to block him out of DIlara's life during her time with me.  I am not going to ask his opinion on anything. I am sure I'll slip up from time to time, but I have a huge sense of relief because this is the answer to my struggles.

I have said for a while that if I can't have a good, healthy relationship with someone, I don't want a relationship at all.  I have been trapped in this one, though.  

I can feel good about this because I am allowing him to come to me.  I am not stonewalling him. If, at any time, he has a change in attitude and wants to co-parent, i think it would be great. BUT, I don't expect that to happen.

Expectations truly set you up for disappointment.  The only thing I expect from him is "more of the same" and if I get anything different, I'll be pleasantly surprised.

I am really trusting God for the outcome of any court decisions. I will appeal as far as I can, if I think the court makes a decision that is not in Dilara's best interest, based on the laws and relevant facts. 

We are currently in a fight over education. Other things I expect to end up in court over are religion, and him getting permission to take Dilara to Turkey. At this point, I would let her go to Turkey when she is 15 or 16, I think, but I might let her go sooner IF I went with her and IF I thought there was no risk of her getting stuck there. At this point, I don't foresee having any confidence that if she went to Turkey, I'd see her again till she was grown. 

It is hard to give up trying to make things the way they SHOULD be, when i have no control. It is very freeing to choose to control the things that I actually DO have the ability to control.

And, of course, there is a lot of peace that comes from trusting that God is in control and working behind the scenes in ways I don't understand.

I thank God every day that Dilara's dad is such a good man, and I am glad that I love him so much.  If I weren't a Christian, I don't think I would have ever gotten to this point.  It is God who gives me this love to bear this burden, to "endure" as 1 Cor. 13 talks about.
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<![CDATA[Homeschooling it is!]]>Sun, 18 May 2014 20:36:13 GMThttp://amothersmusings.weebly.com/a-mothers-musings/homeschooling-it-isWhen I consulted with an attorney last week, he told me that if I went to court to confirm my right to homeschool, he told me that the judge would want more of a parenting plan than we have and that they would wold want me to keep Dilara all week and give Sinan every other weekend because our current schedule would be "too disruptive" for Dilara.  That is a lot of baloney, I think, and I didn't even get to the part of wanting to ask for money for "extraordinary educational expenses" before I had to leave and take Dilara to the bathroom, then on to the hospital to get her stomach pain checked out.

I am going to just go ahead and start "officially homeschooling" her next month and show her Dad what I can do. Hopefully, he will be impressed and won over. I don't like doing something without him being on board.

I hate that this sucked 3 weeks of my life away, but I held my ground
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<![CDATA[NOBODY IS LISTENING TO US!]]>Wed, 07 May 2014 12:24:10 GMThttp://amothersmusings.weebly.com/a-mothers-musings/nobody-is-listening-to-us I spent 2 1/2 hours yesterday in mediation with my daughter's father because I want to continue the work I do with her in giving her a home-centered education, on the schedule I do it on at the current time, and he wants me to send her to a "brick and mortar" school. Things are working beautifully as they are. I'm happy, she's happy, her father's happy. He just doesn't think he will continue to be happy unless she is in a "regular" school.

I do get emotional about my daughter. I was the ONLY one there who knows Dilara very well. I tried to point that out. NOBODY is more of an expert of Dilara, what she needs and how she thinks and what she knows and how she spends her time than I do. I tried to point that out, but it was like beating my head against the wall.

I was sitting there at a table with her father, who spends probably 12 hours a week, actually "one-on-one" with his daughter in a week, and I have NEVER seen him as actively engaged with her as I am for at least 40 hours a week. The lawyer who was sitting at the table with me was being paid to help Dilara's dad get his way. The mediator was being paid to get Dilara's dad and I to come to an agreement or compromise. I was the only person there who acknowledged that not only was what is going on now working well for all of us, but that it is in Dilara's best interest to maintain the status quo.

I felt like I was beating my head against the wall when I pointed out that none of them knew Dilara as well as I did and that they should trust me to be the person most qualified to act in her best interest.  I was frustrated when they kept saying that Dilara's dad didn't want to take my parenting time away. How can they say that I am not losing my parenting time when they are wanting to take my control away of over 22 hours a week of the best hours of the day?  They were not listening to me. I kept hearing "he's not trying to take her away," but I could only visualize a calendar with all the hours Monday through Friday that she was going to be kept away from me against my will, AND against her will. 22 hours is a LOT of time. I am meeting her every need right now, but they wouldn't understand that, either. The argument was that she will be better off being with kids her own age and with other adults to teach her. I said over and over, and I have for years, that she already has a very diverse social experience. I have invited Dilara's dad to meet our friends. He doesn't know anything about our lives...it's a "don't confuse me with the fact" type of situation. He is making judgements that he is not qualified to make!  He is making uninformed decisions. AND he is ignoring the evidence and resisting my attempts to reveal the truth to him.

One of the worst moments for me was my last-ditch effort at the end of mediation to give them an example of how Dilara and I interact. I brougnt my computer and showed this video of Dilara and how she thinks and how we interact with each other. I ended with this, but next time we go to mediation, I will START with it, although it still probably won't make any difference. There is no compromise we can come to. I will not settle for less than the best I can give Dilara and the best I can give her is my time and attention and affection and teaching. This is a small sampling...less than 3 minutes long, of the kind of interaction Dilara and I engage in. She's so brilliant and exciting to me!  I love her ideas. I wish I could record everything she does. NOBODY is even as interested in watching this video than me.  The mediator closed my computer partially through this and she totally missed the points I was trying to make it in showing it.  That really was the worst moment of mediation for me, but it everybody had already made up their mind that we weren't going to come to an agreement. Dilara's dad doesn't pay attention when I try to tell him about things Dilara says and does, either.  Yet, he thinks he knows what is best for her.  I almost opened the computer back up and said, "Wait! You're missing the best part!" but, really, nobody care about what is going on inside Dilara's heart and mind  or see her in the way I do. I can't document every amazing thing she comes up with, but I was glad I caught her explaining why she could not put many beads inside this contraption. This is one VERY small sample of what I think is good interaction between a student and a teacher. I worked in a classroom setting. I know teachers can't give this kind of one-on-one attention and appreciation to an individual. I still got distracted sometimes and got wrapped up inside one child's mind for a while.It is great when kids can get this kind of attention and encouragement. So few children have the opportunity that Dilara does, and it is so unfortunate that her father wants to take her and put her in an environment that will not come anywhere near to meeting her needs as well as they are being met now.  I love her father and I know he wants what is best for Dilara, but he isn't understanding that what she has NOW is the absolute best situation possible. The mediator was "impartial" but she DID have a goal, and that was to get us to come to a compromise. There was NO compromise that I could make that would not rob Dilara of the opportunity she is rightfully entitled to.
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<![CDATA[Are you as reasonable as a 5 year old?]]>Thu, 24 Apr 2014 15:30:30 GMThttp://amothersmusings.weebly.com/a-mothers-musings/are-you-as-reasonable-as-a-5-year-old
Are You As Reasonable As a Five-Year-Old?

Dilara is opinionated, outspoken and has a head full of great ideas. She can be stubborn sometimes and I sometimes let her suffer the consequences of her not- so-well- thought-out actions. Experience IS a GREAT teacher, but it isn't always the BEST teacher.

She made a picture with red "glitter glue" and folded the paper up. She brought it to me to open up and look at. After I looked at it and expressed appreciation for its beauty, I laid it down to dry. She wanted it to be folded back up. I tried to explain to her that it needed to be OPEN when it dried, THEN she could fold it back up. She yelled and screamed about how it was HER picture and SHE could to whatever she wanted to with it.  I said, "I will fold it back up to dry IF you will be quiet and listen to me.  She got quiet and glared at me with crossed arms, but with open ears  as I said, "This picture is made of wet wet glue. The primary purpose of glue is to stick things together, right? Therefore,  if I fold this "glue picture" up while it is wet, what will happen?"  She continued to glare at me in silence, so I answered the question, myself. "Isn't it true that you can expect that the glue will dry while the surfaces of the paper inside are touching each other? If the glue dries while the surfaces of the paper are touching, you will be unable to unfold the picture later, because the parts inside the fold will be glued together in such a way that if you try to open the picture, it will tear the picture up, or else not open at all. You will never again be able to show anyone this beautiful picture because you want to do what you THINK will give you your desired result, and do it YOUR way rather than choose to listen to someone who knows better than you and wants to not see you mess up something beautiful and that you value so much. If you follow my suggestion and let it dry while the paper is flat, the glue will dry on the entire page, THEN, since the glue is flexible, you will be able to fold it again and open it again, just the way you meant for it to do in the first place. Which way sounds better to you now? Folding it to dry, or leaving it flat to dry?"  After a moment, she said, "You're right. Let's do what you said,"

If a strong willed 5 year old can set aside her own preconceptions and be open to the fact that the path she is taking will NOT lead to her desired results, shouldn't an adult be able to?

We should always stay open to the possibility that someone might know a little better than you as to what the facts are and what the outcome will be. Anyone can make an emotional decision. Sometimes, our emotions are all that it seems like we have to go on sometimes. But we ignore facts and evidence and experiences and mistakes of others of others at our own peril.
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<![CDATA[Romans 8:28]]>Fri, 18 Apr 2014 04:40:23 GMThttp://amothersmusings.weebly.com/a-mothers-musings/romans-828This is one of the most comforting verse in the Bible to me, and I don't want anyone to take the wind out of my sails by saying that it doesn't mean what I think it means, even though I still think I am free to interpret and apply it the way it "speaks" to me personally. I think we are all "called" to God, but some of the things he "calls" us to go through to work "good" (what good? Hopefully we'll see later, like in the story of Joseph) may cause us to question that God still loves us and cares for us when he allows us to suffer. I use this verse to remind me that it isn't
"all about me" and even if I cry out to God to reveal his plans to me in advance (like when I got pregnant with Dilara and I asked "God, WHAT are you THINKING to allow this?"), and even if I NEVER see the good end result that came from my "challenge du jour," I can take this verse as a promise that God is in control, he knows what is going on, and I should be honored to play any role he asks me to and I should be confident that he is making something good out of all the mess I make, step into, or get dumped onto me by others. God knows my heart and I love him more than anything and I WANT him to use me to do his "calling" in this life.

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