I have four sons - most of you know Ryan, Kyle and Tye - only a select few of you have met Bryce, the youngest.
In 2001, I moved from Michigan to Utah in search of a wonderful new job that would afford me the opportunity to leave welfare and subsidized daycare behind.
I discussed the move at length with my former husband and we agreed that he would follow in 6 months once he had completed a management training program in a retail store where he was working at the time. We also decided - if memory serves, he suggested - that Bryce should stay with his father since I had no daycare lined up yet. It seemed simple enough. I completed the necessary paperwork to apprise the court accordingly and gave it to Dan - it never made it.
Some months later, there was a hearing - it took place in the middle of the day and over the phone, as I was resident in Utah and Dan was in Michigan. I sat in my white Lincoln Continental with my business suit on - inbetween meetings with my job as a political appointee to the mayor of Salt Lake City. It did not occur to me that I would lose. Lose I did.
I have been trying for a week to get his dad to answer the phone so we can set up a week of parenting time in August of this year.
I lost patience and am now doing something I NEVER wanted to do. I am going through the courts to see my son. Parents should not have to be compelled to do the right thing - when they have children, it should come naturally, particularly in the case of Dan, whose newly-created Facebook indicates:
There is phrase "if you don't know where you are going" any path will take you there. I am very pleased and appreciate all of my friends who have been with me through the good times and bad times. My children mean the world to me, having 4 sons have been the best investment I can imagine and raising Bryce have been the most joy in my life. I appreciate all my church friends who never took sides, you are the best,on Monday.
Well, so much for not taking sides and loving his children - he conveniently forgot to mention that he has done NOTHING to maintain parenting time with me and Bryce, and the others at times, over the years.
The battle lines have been drawn - and not by me!
I still remember how I felt that day in court all those years ago - essentially, they told me I had given up custody by moving out of the state and not filing papers with the court. I remembered my heart being smashed into pieces and not being able to breathe - I put on my brave face and went about my job and no-one ever knew what had happened. I can't believe that I am having to relive this nightmare again.