Monday, July 6, 2009


Several of you have contacted me asking what's going on with the family, i.e. Lil. I haven't said much to date, because things were up in the air. Now that they are slowly settling, here's what's been going on in our household.

If you go back to June, you will find the post entitled PAIN. This will give you Chapter 1 of Lil's story. The incident described in that blog entry happened on the overnight of June 5/6. She was released on the 12th and referred to a partial program, meaning home nights and weekends, but bussed to a day program. She made it through that program for four whole days before she exploded on the overnight of June 22/23, June 23rd being my mom's birthday. SIGH This time, it was ugly. . . really ugly. We couldn't contain her, could barely hold onto her. I called the crisis center while Ray held onto her flailing form. They heard her screaming in the background and told me to simply call the cops and have her taken back to the locked program. We did. She gave the State Trooper an earful when he arrived. He wasn't having any of it. He bundled her up into the ambulance and off she went. This time, we followed the ambulance and then began about 9 hours of hurry up and wait. We got home somewhere around 4AM the morning of the 23rd.

The first few days were rough. She didn't want to see us or have anything to do with us. It started overnight Monday/Tuesday. On Friday, she decided she did want to see us so we visited daily for that weekend. On Monday, they told us they were sure she couldn't come home, but our insurance wouldn't cover a longer stay so. . . they held her on an involuntary commitment order until they could decide what to do for her. At the other end of the hospital floor is an intermediate unit. They wanted to put her there, but they didn't have an approval. Then they started talking about sending her 3 hours away from here. . . one way! I was like. . . OH, NO, YOU DON'T!!! They think she has abandonment issues now??? We would be able to go up there maybe once or twice a month. Uh-uh. Was only going to happen literally over my dead body! On Tuesday, we got a call that a bed on the intermediate unit may be opening up. They confirmed it later that evening. She was to be moved on Thursday, July 2nd.

I arrived at the unit at 10:30 on the 2nd, filled out the discharge paperwork, went downstairs to have her readmitted, went back up for hours of intake and financial meetings. . . and then, home. This unit is for those kids who are being rehabilitated to come home or go to a group home, but not for awhile. The minimum stay is one month; max is one year. After the interviews, they told me they are estimating approximately 3 months for Lil, at which time she will be discharged back into a partial program again. I have no say in this. She belongs partly to the State of New Jersey right now by virtue of her actions. She's not UNhappy there, but she doesn't like it. She wants to come home. I've explained to her over and over that she can't, that it's no longer my decision. She says she understands. I wonder.

We can visit her every day if we'd like, twice on weekends. The problem is economics. It's a 50-mile round trip each time. Even in the little car, the gasoline cost adds up quickly. We always bring her something to eat like an Entenman's pie, brownie, ice cream sundae, milk shake, things like that. She's always hungry. :) The unit has very strict rules on clothing. I've had to buy her a lot of new things. More $$$. So we agreed to go up every other day, for the most part. Oh, family therapy is mandatory once a week also. Right now, it's just Ray and me. Later on, it may include the boys. We have to wait and see. That's a lot of trips. The gas cost is only one part of it. It's 45 minutes each way out and back. We try to make it work with errands we have to run or shopping we have to do. It's still very time-consuming. But we do it. We will continue to do it until she's home.

Folks have asked. . . are we okay with this? Yes and no. She needs help that is beyond our capabilities. So for that purpose, yes, we are okay with it. These beds are in hot demand. The fact that she got one so quickly is a God thing, especially since our insurance won't pay for it. The finance wizards at the hospital are waving their wands and tell me they will get it paid for. Do we miss her? OH, YEAH!!!! This house is way too quiet. I'm usually okay until it's time to leave. She's taken to grabbing onto me at that time. That's when I lose it. I can't show it, but my insides cave and it's all I can do to get out of there without her and without leaving my heart on the floor. Ray feels the same way. He turned 59 on June 25th without his baby girl. He moped around and was on the verge of tears all day long. I'm like that most days if I think about her too much. Going to see her is a bright spot in my day. Leaving her there is the worst. I thought it would get easier. HAH HAH HAH! Not hardly. All we can do is pray that they can help her, God changes her heart. . . or a combination. I don't know what the future will bring, but I know we can't do it as four people. There are FIVE of us in this family. That missing 20% is killing us. To get her the help she needs, we may have to move into the county she's now in. That's okay. We will do what it takes. This house means nothing to me. I'll do just about anything to avoid having to leave her and walk away. When it was "temporary," it wasn't so bad. There was always the chance that she would come home again. Now it's much more permanent. It scares me. Oh, Lord, I miss my baby girl!!!

So now we attempt to settle into a routine with visitations, phone calls and such. Life will get back to what passes for normal around here, but. . . no, I said that wrong. Even in this bizarro world we live in, it won't be anywhere close to normal until I no longer have to leave her standing there, as they lock the door between us. The sound of that lock is what tears another piece out of my heart.


  1. I'm so sorry, Carla. I'm having flashbacks and remember how it feels to see the sad eyes as I walked away. I don't know exactly how you feel though. This is your little girl you've raised from birth. Mine was a child who was born in my heart and lived with us for a while. I loved her dearly and it ripped my heart out when we had to do a similar thing. But I don't know the depth of pain you feel. I do ache in my heart for you and pray that God will give you His supernatural strength at this time.

  2. Carla..

    My heart and prayers go out to you! I am asking God for extra grace and peace for you during this very difficult time for both of you. May this bring about a great blessing in your life and your relationship with Lil.

  3. I am in continual prayer over your family dear one! May the Lord heal her, protect her, comfort her and keep her, show her His love and grace and mercies and guide the drs to help her come home to you whole. May the Lord be your strength and comfort.

  4. Wow - the pain you are going through, my friend. We are all praying for you - and trusting that the answer is just around the corner. God has not forgotten about you - and He sees the "big picture" - never forget. Lots of love :)

  5. Oh Carla - my heart goes out to you so. I am so sorry to hear all that you have (and still are) gone through.

    My prayers and thoughts are with you.

    "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." He will give you the strength.

    God bless.

  6. Carla, I had no idea you were going through this. I will hold your entire family in prayer asking for Gods arms to hold you giving you comfort and strength! You had to do what Lil needed you to do. She will turn a corner, you must believe that, Stay positive, no matter what. HUGS AND MORE HUGS! Brenda

  7. This had me in tears Carla. I'm so sorry to hear that you have been going through this as well. I'm praying for you and Ray and especially for Lil!

  8. Carla,

    I am so sorry for the pain you and Ray are going through. You have already been through so much! You are an amazing women! I admire you for your love for God and your strength. If you need an ear or a shoulder to cry on, I am always an email away!


  9. Carla: We will keep praying for you.