I AM STILL STANDING!
I, first want to thank my favorite singer, Elton John and songwriter, Bernie Tauphin for the title of my story.
I have written many stories here. This one is about how I am still standing after losing my parental rights to my daughter, Rebecca, due to mental illness and the narrowmindness of society against those with Mental illness and disabilities.
After I lost Rebecca, and once she was placed in to her respective adoptive home. I did the next best thing for myself, I went on to vocational rehab services and got myself an education.
First of all, the Great State of Alabama helped me to get through the process. They helped me with tution, support, and encouragement. I have gone through two other state vocation services and have received very little help and support and services. Virginia first flat turned me down for it. I had to go over their heads, because they said mental disabilities did not qualify for vocational services and training. Not until I went to the US Dept. of Human services and reported this too the authorities. Dr.Splinker
is to thank for making sure atleast I got into the services. After they ran psychological testing on me, they determined I was not ready to go to work. Hmm, fine how do you do.
Alabama gave me the assistance and encouraged me and gave me the supportive services to make it through.
Although,I was not able to finish the training I went into, due to a lack of unwillingness on the side of lawyers to give me an internship for my paralegal studies, I came out with a great knowledge on the subject of laws.
I also got an opportunity to study theology and Biblcal studies and secretarial science, it would have been nice if I could have gotten my degree in Paralegal studies. But public opinion and lack of knowlege and information on mental illness and disabilties keeps one from getting accepted in to the workforce. Ignorance causes fear, because some people still think it is communicable. Yes, right.
No, wrong,it is not. Mental illness is not communicable and you can not catch it. Some of it is due to a no fault brain disorder, some is caused by social-envirnomental factors, and some by heredity and genetics. Just to put the record straight.
Some people think if someone has mental illness they can not live normal and productive lifes. Hold down full time jobs and raise their children. What is normal, I donot know anyone whom fits the criteria of "normal" as defined by
sociologists and psychologists.
Every holiday season beginning at Thanksgiving and ending around New Year, a great many psychiatrists and psychologists end up committing suicide, now how normal is that? Not very. So, I went onto better myself like I said. I had to learn to pick up the pieces of my life without my daughter, whom I knew deep down in the depths of my soul would be lost to be forever, but I still kept hoping that one day we would be close. I am a realistic, and I realize I can not make up for all time we lost, but I can try to make a new chapter for us. But that is way ahead of this story.
I lived with my best friend, Teresa, whom was wonderfully supportive towards me. She is a Christian in every aspect.
When my family let me down and all, she was there to be a sister and friend to me. She encouragaed me to stay in college and get my education,even if it meant she had to pay all the bills herself. I could not let that happen.
Lord willing, he blessed me with a job at MCDonald's that abled me to continue
my education and pay my expenses, so Teresa would not have to pick the whole bill up herself.
Years later, many years later, Teresa was here for me as well as my boyfriend, when we both received into the Catholic Church as members on Easter Vigil 96 and 97. Not one member of my family showed up. Now, Teresa is not rich but she lives comfortably, and I am sure she would have rather stayed in Alabama than travelled by bus and had to stay in a hotel for my boyfriend and I. But no, she did not begrudge me.
She wanted to be here for both of us.
I am getting a head of story once again. Well, my late dad expected me to work free for him. I said, no,! See, during the first year of my college life,he paid for my apartment, but that was what he wanted to do, it was not at my sugguestion. He got mean apartment only to take it away a year later due to his accessive need for alcohol and getting him into debt that he could not get himself out of.
Understand, my psychiatrist and therapist tried to explain to him but could not get through to him that I needed to do one thing at a time, and they asked him what was more important my education or working, that I could not do both as it may effect my mental wellbeing. He got nasty with my therapist and she would have nothing more to do with him. So, at the beginning of my second year, he cameand told me, I either had to find ajob and pay for half of the expenses or move back in with him, thus giving up my pell grant because it would be based upon his income and I would not be able to get a red cent.
Teresa to the rescue, We meet on Easter Sunday of 1985, she was a God-scent.
She was very much like me, a christian,
we didnot smoke, drink, or take drugs or engage an any sexual activity. We were both introverted and neither of us had many friends. We were both trying to find a new church to go too at this time. We became fast friends. Stayed good friends. She is like the sister I never had. I wish she was my sister in fact.
Teresa had just moved into her own apartment, and she thought it was very selfish of my dad to take away my apartment. He was not paying for any of my education, expenses, or etc. The state and the federal government were.
All he was doing is paying my rent, electricity and a little bit of food.
Compared to my college expenses, that was a drop in the bucket.
Well, I moved in with Teresa with the help of my friends, Chuck and Mark.
They helped me move all my furniture and personal belongings to Teresas.
I continued to go to school and the Lord found me ajob so I could help Teresa pay the rent and electricity and phone and food.
I moved onwards, because I had to come to the realization that I had along time to wait before Rebecca would be able to even write me.
I moved back and forth between Chicago and Huntsville, ALabama since that time. But made a permanent move to Chicago on March 1, 1990. It was not until after July of 95, Rebecca first made contact with me . She was nearly 17 and had started to ask questions about me, and her adoptive mother did not like it. So, she took my daughter d own to Va and to talk to my sister.
We wrote for the first 5 years and finally meet for the first time last September 2000. I thought things would work out between us but they didnot.
So, I am still standing once again, and it isbecause it was my choice after I s aw how Rebecca was raised, and how spoiled she became I decided to call it off. In time, she may come around, if not we had the chance to meet and it wa of her own choosing that things did not work out between us.