Not proofing. Want to get this posted.
Yep! It’s been awhile. A lot and not much has happened at the same time it seems. For starters, if you didn’t know. I was home for a couple weeks at Christmas. I had been back in Montana for about a week and a half when Adam came out for a few days. We had a good and productive visit and then it started. What’s it? The winter crud hit in a couple of different forms. As soon as Adam left I spent 3 or 4 days not feeling quite right. I wasn’t sick per se, but something was off. Kelly and Erika said the same thing at the time and that was after 5 of their 7 got to fight the flu in mid January. My guess is I was fighting off something, but I’m not sure what.
I think I had about a week of feeling good, and then around the first of February something sinus/allergy related hit. The worst of it lasted around a week, but it chose to linger…and linger. I used all the remedies I’d been told to try including a neti pot, but I just couldn’t shake it. Since I’ve been going to the Boys and Girls Club, I was being exposed to a lot of bugs. That and a weakened immune system left me vulnerable to an attack. And guess what? I was hit hard.
For the first time in my adult life—and possibly whole life—it was my turn for the flu. Ten glorious days of fever and being generally isolated. I was basically able to care for myself for which I am thankful. I did not want the Mitchells to take a chance on revisiting the cad. They along with a Vicky from church did do a couple of grocery runs for me though.
While I didn’t feel like I was hit by a train, bus, or Mack truck, my tank was pretty much sitting on empty for the first 4 or 5 days. My smeller and taster both died and my voice was operating at about half strength. I don’t think I ever knew the flu was a respiratory infection. It makes sense that certain populations need to be careful because of the risk of pneumonia though. Other than my voice, I finally got over it and felt well for about a week. But after that I’ve been dealing with slight sinus issues for about a month now…and spring pollen hasn’t even started! When I started thinking about it, I realized the last 10 months have been the sickest I’ve been since I was a kid. Oh what fun.
Enough about me though. The biggest thing that’s happened affects the Mitchells and a family from church. Two and a half weeks ago the Mitchells got a call from the tribes’ child protective service. They were removing 4 children from the home of a church member. I’ve spoken about Tiffany before, and the tribe was taking her 5 and 3 year old sons along with her 16 and 4 year old sisters. CPS couldn’t get in touch with any of Tiffany’s emergency contacts so she gave them the Mitchells names. They asked them if they would consider taking the boys for emergency fostering. Initially it sounded as if the girls were going to be going to their grandmas even though she isn’t capable of caring for them.
Within a couple of hours the Mitchells were at CPS and all four kids were there. They had decided to take the boys with the initial thought they would have them for 5 or 6 days. When they left, they had 4 more kids to add to a 1,200 square feet home that already was seemingly maxed out with 7 people.
But what about Tiffany? I don’t know all of the details, but there was initially an accusation regarding a return to drug use that started things. Her mom and step-father lived with her and they play into things as well since the 2 sisters were removed as well. The general care the children were getting is also in question. The young ones all have dental issues that need to be addressed. None of them were potty trained either (which is not uncommon). Tiffany has tried before but had given up.
I’m not going to speculate what’s true and not at this point, but it’s now been two and a half weeks into what is now a 90 day commitment for the Mitchells. They can opt out, but they are going to try and make it work in hopes that the families can be reunited. Tiffany and her parents are all in parenting classes right now. They have much to do to get to where they need to be. The parents have moved in with grandma for the time being. That was a tribal requirement and is actually something that is good for Tiffany. Tiffany knows they are bad influences but felt like she had to house them once they lost their prior home.
So how do you pray? Wow! Good and big question. Because of long-term history, many natives don’t know how to parent. Because of recent history with alcohol and drug abuse, most kids don’t have parents much less than one who knows how to parent. Pray that Tiffany and her parents can be free from any substance abuse that may have happened or is happening. Pray that they will learn and be able to implement things in the parenting classes they are taking. Pray that Erika and Kelly will be able to mentor Tiffany now and in the future in how to be a parent. Pray for Tiffany as she is home alone for now. She gets to see the kids 2 or 3 times a week, but she is alone much of the time. Loneliness can make you desperate at time, so pray that God will fill her with what she needs instead of her looking elsewhere. Generally speaking, pray the same for her parents (Kris and Man)…and pray for their salvation. Tiffany is a Christian.
Pray for the children—Andraidyn (3), Kasi (4), Zaidyn (5) and Kiersten (16). They are handling things relatively well, but this is obviously traumatic for them. They definitely know they are loved by their family but also by the Mitchells. They seem almost torn right now. Pray also for the Mitchells. This is a huge undertaking for them. Thankfully they have a couple of friends who have fostered and eventually adopted. They are a wealth of knowledge and encouragement during this time. The Mitchell kids also need prayer. Their space has been invaded. Their parents’ attention is now divided. It is definitely hard on them although they are making their way through this difficult time. I’m sure there is much more I could mention, but I think you can easily imagine things that likely fit the situation.
Vicky (I’ve mention before) is doing really well right now. Pray for her as she starts a new job and for continued victory over substance abuse. Lydia Wolfblack (with her husband Warren along for encouragement) has recently gone to Wyoming to start an alcohol rehab program. Pray for her general health in addition to her ability to overcome her addiction with God’s help.
My storying is going fairly well. I feel like the more I do it the better I am getting. The problem is when I go back and read the early attempts I am left thinking how bad they are. I thought I would be able to just replace a few words in my samples and it’s not that easy. With diligence and inspiration things will come together though.
So long for now. And by the way, the 3 youngest children are basically potty trained at this point!