Friday, June 6, 2008

Billy II

Billy is this kid that came to live with my friends when he was almost 6 years old.
He had not been in school because his drug addict mom was in the throws of her disease.
Grandma has a lot of the same issues and great grandma doesn't speak English.

So my friends wanted to salvage this kids life.
They brought him into their new home.
If you want to get up to speed you have to read Wednesdays post

Anyway Billy and his mom were going to give it a go.
Billy couldn't wait.
One, he was going to be with his mom. I think he always felt different at school because he lived with his aunt and uncle. He would always be around rich private school kids and they would all talk about their families. Soccer moms coming to pick them up in the mini-van. Everyone appearing to have the ideal family and Billy's mom is no where around.
Two, she was his best friend. She made sure of this. She was the kind of person that the only thing she had was Billy. So she would always be upset if Billy had more than her. Sad really.
So instead of discipline he got friendship. It is hard being a parent for the first time to a 6,7,8, 9 year old.
As a parent you realize that creating boundaries is what your kid needs. I mean if you are with them everyday you learn real fast that if the "rod of discipline" (not necessarily the paddle, it could be restriction, or something to that affect) is not there, things will go south fast. You, as a parent realize if you are not addressing issues the issues will escalate out of control.
But if you are on the outside looking in, of course you just want the kid to like you. You want to have fun.
Three, rules suck. I mean my friends were working hard to put this kid in the "circle of blessing", meaning having rules. If you obey, you are in the circle where there are rewards and happiness. And if you are out of the circle and not obeying the rules there are consequences and no fun.
But to a kid it feels a little oppressive.
So if I tell a kid, I tell you you can have all the blessings but not be in the circle. TAKE IT.
If you don't have to obey rules and everything is great. OH YEAH.

So Billy jumped at the opportunity. FREEDOM.

He had friends, he had a family that loved him, he had a church, he had baseball teams and basketball teams. Everything you think every kid would love to have. He left them all behind.

So mom and Billy had a great summer. I don't know what they did. But, as you can imagine, Billy came back changed. Living with a drug addict, I would imagine is alot different than living in suburbia.
Now 11 and a half and it is time to live back in Orlando.
Well it was probably what you can imagine.
Billy didn't want to be there. Billy wanted to be with his mother. He acted out his anger.
He ran away. He got all up in my friends face saying, "Come on, you want to go?"
This was a bit of an issue when now my friends have their own kids that are watching all this go down.
He hated school (school is stupid, I mean no one who goes to school does anything with their life. Besides all the teachers are jerks).
He would wake up in the morning and say, "I am not going to go to school today. Oh, and there is nothing you can do to make me go."
By this time in the morning, the uncle was already at work, so there really wasn't anything the aunt could do.
Things escalated at the house.
He would run away. Cops were at the house a lot.
He would call HRS (family services) and make up a lies. Now this is a big deal because remember my friends had their own kids. The agency came out and did interviews and a house search. Scaring the bejesus out of them.

Battle lines were being drawn and Billy kept stepping all over them.
He was daring our friends to kick him out. But they were hellbent on changing things for Billy. They didn't want to fail. Because if they failed they realized there was almost NO hope for Billy.
Well as all this was going down Billy continued to talk to his mother.
"This is bullshit mom I want to be with you."
So mom decided to pull the trigger.
I mean, she must be a real piece of work.
Much to the dismay of my friends. They pleaded with her, "talk to him. Make him stay at least til the end of the year."
She said, "No, right now".
She was in control.

The aunt was beside herself. She loved this kid like her own son. Her sister was taking away a part of her. Now don't forget when Billy was born she was there. They all lived together before she got married. She changed his diapers. She took care of him when mom "went out for bread".
But the uncle knew it was probably best. He was about to lose his temper. He could of done things that would of affected the rest of his life (with his own kids).
He knew it was time for Billy to go. He told me he felt relieved he was gone.

She didn't have any money.
She didn't have food.
She didn't have any place to live.
She hadn't thought of what school to put him in.
There was no thinking, just doing.

So Billy and his mom lived out of her car for a couple of months.
Literally reversing 7 years of hard work in no time flat.
She got him into school and he was in fights constantly.
Because of mom's street smarts, she told him, "Go to school and let people know you will not be picked on. So I want you to get into fights so people will know not to mess with you."
So from private Christian school to this.
He went from tutors and Sunday school to fighting people for respect.

So it wasn't long before Billy was detained. I don't know if he was arrested but he had to leave the school. The government decided he was going to have to live in a boys home.
I have always thought this was a good idea. Take a group of delinquents and put them in a "home" together.
With mom still supporting him with, "you better let them know you are not going to take any shit from anyone."

For the next five years this was Billy's life. In for a year and then out for a month. In for 2 years, out for 2 weeks.
In addition to learning the art of fighting, I think Billy met some really good people in jail (oh, yes, it was juvenile by now). People that were going to help him when he got out. People that were going to get him his own street corner to sell drugs on.

The aunt has always been a bit of a bleeding heart. Give him a chance, look at the cards he has been dealt.
Now the uncle has been hardened by the facts. Every decision Billy has made has been more and more destructive.

3 years ago Billy got out. By this time his mother is doing drugs and his grandmother is a full on alcoholic. What did he have to come home to? (It was really sad. My friends were helpless at this point because now Billy and his mother lived states away.)
This literally lasted 3 weeks until he was busted again. This time, I think, it was for drugs.

He was sentenced for 5 years.

This is where this story will end for the weekend.

I know I have not put you in a great mood but...
His aunt and uncle (and family) have been praying for someone to take an interest in Billy's life. Someone that would take care of him when he got out.
Someone that would love on him unconditionally...that person showed up.
I will tell you about it on Monday.

Have a great weekend.
2 weeks until Fathers Day.

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