“They can’t wake her up. They’ve tried, but they can’t rouse her.” Her voice cracked as she pled with me. “Can anyone go over there right now?” Clearly, she was desperate, and in a shaky voice, she fed me more of the story. “They need help. Please.”
It happened around 7:00 this morning, and when my phone had sounded, it was the grandmother whose voice I heard, who, from another state, was calling me here in Lake Havasu. “They’re ready to go to school, but they can’t arouse their mother. They need help,” again she pled with me.
I tried to calm her, immediately saying I would drive over and see what I could do. After giving me the house address and directions, she tried to tell me her cell phone number, but she was so distraught, she could not recall her own number. Quickly, both Jerry and I dressed, got in our car and drove to the address. A police car was in front of the house when we arrived. The house was quiet as I stood before the entry door, and I wondered if the children had been taken away already, but after I knocked softly, I turned the handle and it opened. Another couple was there, (trusted neighbors, I learned, whom the grandmother had also called) along with the brightly-smiling little girls who ran across the room, and as I bent down, who enveloped me with their tiny arms. I could not help myself, and although I tried to avert my face so they would not see, I wept.
Drugs, alcohol, drunkenness, fighting in the home, father in prison now–I just can’t go into more details because of privacy issues, but trust me, this is going on in an upper middle class home where live three of the most charming, beautiful, well-behaved children you can imagine. It is tragic.
Smiling the policewoman spoke to the girls about school. “Third day, huh?” she said. “How is it? Like your teachers?”
Beaming, those little girls brightly nodded. “I love my teacher,” one of them said.
The neighbor remarked about how nice they looked. “Look, everything matches,” he said to the little one.
“Pink,” she said. “My shoes are pink.” They were charming. They were pitiful. Standing now beside the couch, backpacks ready, they eagerly scanned our faces, seemingly unaffected (likely this is not so; they are probably extensively scarred) by the chaos surrounding them.
“Your skirt is beautiful,” I said to the middle child.
“I wore it to church Sunday,” she said softly, as she turned her stunning face to look into mine.
“No one’s in trouble,” the policewoman assured the children, who sat now on the couch. “Everything’s okay.”
Once, the policewoman beckoned to the oldest child. I watched, as, with a large backpack on her narrow shoulders, that frail little girl–not yet a teenager–stood before the towering policewoman and answered questions. I ached for her.
The mom was awake now, still in the bedroom, and the policewoman went back and forth with discussions, the mom finally deciding the neighbors should drive the children to school.
“We’re leaving now,” the policewoman said as she walked down the hall toward the bedroom of the mother. “Shall I lock the front door?”
She had taken my name earlier, and as we stepped outside, the policewoman told me, “She claims she was just so tired she did not wake up. Denies any other problems.” She paused, then added, “I will be calling Child Protective Services, though. They will take it from here.”
The children are at school. CPS has been notified. The grandmother is on her way to Lake Havasu.
I’ve not written this piece merely to report on my activities this morning, but rather to plead for the children of our world. I’m pleading for parents with children in your home to stop drinking and to stop taking illegal drugs. It is likely you are wounding your children. I’m asking you to stop fighting, and to stop neglecting your children. I’m painfully aware of drug problems, and although I have never been an addict myself, I work closely with many, and have a clear understanding of how difficult it is to break these addictions. But it can be done. Others have done so. You, too, can do it.
I’m pleading with others: Grandmothers, mothers, aunts, uncles, friends, neighbors–if we are aware of such wounded children, let us softly, but effectively tend them. It is hard work, risky, frightening, and sometimes unpleasantly confrontational. But it must be done. Some are brave enough to take on this challenge; one is a grandmother who at this moment is on her way to Lake Havasu to fight for her grandchildren.
Yesterday, on the phone my daughter asked if I was okay. I’m fine, I assured her. Why did she ask. Your writings have been so intense and full of angst lately, she said, and that had caused her to worry a little and wonder if everything was okay.
Everything is fine, I assured her, and on considering my recent writings, I somewhat agreed with her, and decided to write something light today…until my phone rang around 7:00 this morning….
8 replies on “Wounded Children of The World”
WOW!!! Sis. Buxton, I actually have admit that it has been quite a few months since I have been on your actual blog on not just FB, but this post REALLY just brings tears to my eyes!!! I’ve been emerged a lot in to the depths of what is going on with the children of this world. With the outreach kids and also within the foster care system. Its sad to say that CPS doesn’t seem to do a lot these days unless they have VISABLE proof…we know for we too have called them many times for children. The only hope for the children today is that we have a buren for them and call out to Jesus for them in prayer! Thanks for speaking out about it!
Here is something I wrote on my blog about the children…
This is such a timely subject matter, one that has been on my own heart. Not only have I driven ol bus for many children that are in foster care, but I’ve recently been apprised of a situation where CPS removed two children from a home and have been deeply troubled about it. The children that I drove daily were very “disconnected”, and deeply distrustful. I would try in every way that I could to chat with them, show interest in their lives, but most of them would just not let me in. And then they would disappear to another foster home with no notice, and it would upset me terribly. In this latest situation that I learned of, two children were removed from a home of a single mom whose dad was in 12 months of rehab. For some reason (I do not know why) the CPS workers would not allow them to take any personal belongings (no teddy bear, clothes or anything familiar at all), which made the situation that much more devastating for the children.
Yes, Sis. Buxton, we need desperately to pray. Pray for the troubled parents, pray for wisdom for CPS workers (I know most of them are well intentioned and would find it very difficult to have to make snap decisions as to which children were safe to leave and which were not), pray for the foster care situation, but mostly pray for these children. These lovely, impressionable souls that just need a fighting chance.
Thank you Katrina and Nita for your concern and for your prayer for these beautiful little girls. Thank you, too, Nita for prayer for Jerry and me. We really do need it.
I will pray for Gods perfect will for these precious children. I also pray in Jesus Name for you and Uncle Jerrys strength to be refreshed.
After reading your post today, I cannot even consider myself to have problems. The world is a hurting place. I am adding the children to my prayers. We really have no idea what is going on in the homes around us.
God Bless you, Shirley as you reach out to the world around you.
Thank you Rebecca and Helen for your concern, and most of all for your prayers.
My prayers are with you, Shirley, but even more so with those three little girls and their mother. May God softly touch them all.
My prayers are with you Mom and Dad. Unbelievable. Why why why?