Wednesday, 30 July 2008

Gone, gone gone gone

Sorry I have been gone ...and not been able to devote as much time to this blog as I would like. But I am back again & vowing not to neglect you. In the course of the last few weeks I have been particularly amazed by the loveliness of my clients. This includes family members, guardians, social workers & the lawyers. And the loveliness of the professionals I meet. Some examples. A teenage client who was consenting to a secure accommodation order: all she wanted me to say to the court, after she got over her understandable upset that she had never met me before in such frightening circumstances, was to list all the ways she needed help and what she wanted to work on. A social worker who was emailing me stuff at 9pm on a Sunday night because she took her responsibilities seriously. A solicitor who took a 20 mile detour to make sure I had the documents I needed. An political representative who is a stand against injustice and listens to all sides of the argument. A judge who was prepared to sit late to make sure that the parents got a fair hearing when they were told they were going to get it. The lawyers who tell me stuff about what is going on so it gets covered in my blogs. The general public who are a demand for justice. The mother & father who carry on the battle to keep their children when all the evidence seems to be against them. The Guardian who is open-minded enough to argue that social workers should not contemplate placing children with adopters who will not countenance accepting contact which the professionals think is in their interests. The experts and professionals who admit that some decisions are just too tough to call. The mother who wrote a thank you letter to the foster carer she had a lot of difficulty with, focussing on all the positives that had been contributed to her, when you could easily understand if she just focussed on the negatives. The parents in the middle of a court battle who could see that no matter what the row between them, the child needed a relationship with both parents. The social worker who was able to see that the family needed to feel they had a fresh start and so took herself away from the case. The social worker who acknowledged the hard work and progress the challenged parent was making. The usher who noticed that I was upset about my case. The family that agreed together that one set of grandparents would be supported to care for a child. The mum who worked her socks off after a history of injury to her oldest children to make sure it wouldn't happen again to the child she eventually kept. The clerk who sat until 7.30 on a Friday night. It's not that everything in the family law garden is rosy but we so often just hear about the negatives in family law. I feel surrounded by people doing their best and whose best is always something to admire. There are heroes in the seaweed.