Wednesday 10/13/21: Reg gave me the business card from Lottie from DCFS, telling me I was supposed to call her. I called Thursday, somewhat late in the day. Lottie said I needed to figure out a date when we would all be there to be interviewed, because she didn't want to come back. "Look at your schedule and call me back."
Friday: I called the next day with my schedule. I left a message.
I think I called again on Tuesday. Left ANOTHER message.
Finally the woman called me back on a Wednesday. Apparently, this was not a pressing matter to DCFS - as it shouldn't have been.
During the waiting-to-be-called-back time, Alice reached out to me with this: THEY SAY THE BOYS HAD BRUISES ON THEM. COULD THAT BE TRUE?
I was at the dinner table. This made it hard to eat. What.On.Earth. OF COURSE IT IS POSSIBLE THAT THEY HAVE BRUISES ON THEM . . . THEY'RE BOYS.
Let me add a tidbit to this timeline: the boys spent the weekend at respite care before we called it quits on that Monday. They essentially stayed on a farm from Friday afternoon till Sunday afternoon. Played outside. Climbed shit. Visited a pumpkin patch where they did more of the same. They gave us a hard time about going to bed that Sunday night, but Larry switched back to agreeable mode after a game of Memory while Harry tore papers up in the study until Coach sat him on his lap in a bear hug. It wasn't their most violent episode. Monday I raced around the house packing their stuff while they played outside. No bruising.
Mini pointed out that the Thursday night before we secured a respite care placement, they physically fought with one another in their room. I was on the phone in the kitchen BEGGING Alice to offer us support. Coach had been summoned home once again, and my kids (Tank was home for fall break from college) were attempting to corral the boys in their room, where they broke into a fight. Could they have bruises from that on Monday when I dropped them off 'under the rainbow' with a temp foster mom? Maybe. I do know this: WE DIDN'T BRUISE THEM.
I explained to Lottie that gathering all of us was going to be tough. What was even tougher was trying to schedule something with her when I HAD NO IDEA WHO SHE WANTED TO SEE. We went round and round.
Me: COACH WORKS UNTIL 6:30 ON FRIDAYS NOW, SO AFTER SCHOOL WON'T WORK.
Lottie: WELLL, THAT'S FINE. I CAN JUST TALK TO HIM OVER THE PHONE. *I was on some kind of delay and didn't immediately realize that this was because they were only investigating ME.
Me: OH. I CAN MEET FRIDAY AFTER SCHOOL. LAD WON'T BE HERE . . .
Lottie: HE'S OVER 18? I CAN JUST CALL HIM, AND COACH. ANYONE OVER 18 I CAN TALK TO OVER THE PHONE.
Me: THIS MIGHT BE A WHOLE LOT EASIER IF YOU TELL ME WHO YOU WANT TO TALK TO.
She asked me if I had a licensed daycare. Nope. I babysit though.
She was so confused because I kept telling her this report was most likely about the boys we'd been trying to adopt but she kept asking me what the name of my daycare was. Huh?
Then she read me the report. I didn't catch the first part, like it didn't register. Then 'the reporter' claimed that I held Larry down in a 'takedown hold' - which I did and the reason Larry knows it was called a takedown hold was because I said THIS IS A TAKEDOWN HOLD AND IT IS TO KEEP YOU SAFE. Harry claimed I'd grabbed him, which is when Coach held him in a bear hug. Not me.
*This bugs the crap out of Mini: part of their disfunction was to become easily upset with me, thus Coach is not mentioned in the report.
The next part caused me to double over in my kitchen. The boys were claiming that we hurt them AND that I mistreated the babies in my care. I allegedly drag babies around by their arms for no reason (as if there'd ever be a reason) and I lock them in the mudroom. WHAT WAS THIS?
Later, I vaguely remembered Tank joked at the dinner table MONTHS ago when the boys were visiting: DID YOU HAVE TO LOCK WILHELM IN THE MUDROOM TODAY?
If my kids were sleeping and Wilhelm or another crier came in crying, I would sometimes say you have to sit in the mudroom until you're ready to play. Never locked him in. It happened a few times because usually they could be easily distracted. Tank, aka funny guy, likes to tease about stuff, but the sit-here-till-you've-calmed down hadn't happened for months and H & L were never here when it did. The parents I sit for also know that this is part of my routine when needed, BTW.
Lottie now said she needed to talk to the mom I sit for and see 'the kid' - as if there was one kid that I usually drag around by his arm. I selected Friday, knowing that she could talk to a few moms at pickup time.
I talked to Alice afterwards. I told her how unreal and RIDICLOUS the daycare thing was and how nothing in that report was really accurate - or at least evidence of a problem. Larry WAS held down when his meds were changed and he reacted badly/violently. There was also a police report that they could look at from the weekend-from-hell-med-change nightmare and the 10 police, paramedics, firemen that came to the house that Monday didn't note the situation as abusive.
A few hours later while Mini and I sat at the computer editing her college essays, BECAUSE TRY AS I MIGHT TO CANCEL THE REST OF EVERYTHING LIFE CONTINUED AT A FAST-ASS-PACE, Alice texted me a screen shot of the actual report. Now I could read it and take it all in. The first part, that had sounded strange and didn't really register with me, now struck me in the face. HARD.
I now knew who was behind this bull shit. I WAS LITERALLY ABOUT READY TO PUNCH A WALL . . . REALLY HARD.