Tuesday, February 17, 2004

Do you know where your children are?

A 17 year old surfing a "missing children" website was surprised to see his own picture listed. Turns out his mother objected to the custody ruling 14 years ago, and left Canada with her son to hide out from the father. The teen just had his whole reality ripped out from underneath him... his mother is in jail, and he understandably isn't sure what to do about suddenly gaining a father.

When I was 8, I lived in southern California with my mother, seeing my father on the weekends and a bit more in the summer. My mother remarried and got keen on Jesus, so we left California and moved to Utah... but my mother didn't tell anyone where she was going. My father, mostly at the urging of his own parents, hired a detective to find out where I was - this was back before you could just look on the web - and the guy tracked us down. I'd been in Utah maybe 4 or 5 years before I saw my father again, and in a way I never saw him again, since my role as a pawn in the post-divorce old-wounds game was more valuable to both my parents than my role as their son. Some things you just can't put back together again.