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2006-12-10 - 4:11 a.m.

My legal update: The PPO is still standing. The judge STAYED the order that it was thrown out and is reviewing my MOTION TO RECONSIDER after having heard my attorney's oral argument last FRI on that matter.

So we are awaiting a ruling on that Motion to Reconsider and it could go either way, but I have a feeling we will have another hearing on this matter and the judge won't just throw out the PPO.

It was actually pretty funny that it came to light that at 9am sharp neither I nor my attorney were there for the first appeal on NOV 15! AH HA... he did in fact show up, but the fact he was just a few minutes late sheds light on why the judge initally THREW OUT THE PPO. *And I actually had a suspicion of that since at 9:08 the courtroom was LOCKED and looked like it had never been UNLOCKED that AM! (They wouldn't have locked it back up that day once opened as there was another matter later on!)

Not having an attny there at 9am sharp is indeed a bit different than had he been there in my mind) as indeed if neither client nor attny are there what else COULD a judge do but throw out a matter?

I have no issue with him being a few minutes late! I am forgiving with great understanding regarding that trait as I struggle with being on time.

Ironically, my attorney told me on the phone this past Thu "see you tommorrow at 9:30"
and I said
"I hope not as I will be there AT 8:30. The hearing is at 9 am"

My attny said "I thought it was at ten" and then went to double check. He said "Wow- so it is. See you at 8:30"

So at 8:30 AM last Fri I was sure to be on time, and there I sat with my attny until 9am when we went before the judge who commented "Is this on the docket now?"

My attny said "Yes, although the other party is not here."

And the judge or my attny commented "That's a mistake, this should have been scheduled for 10am"

So the irony is that around 9:30 or so Westley and his attny showed up.

My attny did find it amusing that I was THE ONLY ONE who noted the actual time.


I wasn't exactly AMUSED by that, more like a bit suspicious.... but that is indeed what happens when tramatized after abuse. One becomes a bit jaded and the fact it really unlikely that three out of four people involved in litigation would misread a time of a hearing seems highly suspect and not something to laugh at.

Because had I not been there at 9am I wouldn't have had a PPO.

The matter of the entry of the nuptial hit the 21 day in which I had to file an objection this past week. I made it CLEAR to my attny WEEKS AGO that was PRIORITY TO DO.

There was in fact ANOTHER matter before the court on Friday that I deemed to really just be a red herring intended to distract and consume resources, time and energy and I thought upon receiving it was a ball being thrown at me tactically so I would have so much to juggle that I would drop the important ball.

I didn't fall for that.

But I also realized that in the past to NOT RESPOND at all didn't really send the strong message I intended. I realize it might send that message to Westely and his lawyer, but the message to a judge is also important, and while I THOUGHT not personally appearing the day in which the TRIAL DATE was being set for the PPO APPEAL was a strong message I have no need to be there as I will not negotiate to diminish my protecction in any way, and that I don't want to be MANIPULATED and open to the emotional ploys, and that I want The discretion of a THIRD PARTY NON INVOLVED JUDGE to review it if Westely insists on going forth with the appeal, in hindsight I realize the court could get THE OPPOSITE message that it just is not important to me!

On the contrary I believe the PPO is ESSENTIAL for the health safety and well being of our family, and because I feel SO STRONGLY about that I REFUSED TO NEGOTIATE.

Showing up in court for a day when all was being done is setting a trial date only would have set myself up for the pressure of being asked to "settle" the matter. I refused to do that. Why put myself in that position of stress and anxiety in Westley's presence any more than necessary?

So the hearing Fri was interesting, I felt on a number of counts. ONe being that my attny, for some bizarre reason opted to sit RIGHT NEXT TO WESTLEY's attny when waiting for a metter to be heard. I sat NEXT TO HIM VERY UNCOMFORTABLE with WESTELY RIGHT NEXT TO HIS ATTNY

I thought that was STUPID MOVE on my atty's part as
a. It looks to the court I am not afraid of Westely if I'll sit in close proximity

b. It made me wonder once again if my attny gave me such a good deal on his rate as he is being paid elsewhere for this matter... and I wondered just who the heck is he working for??? Is it REALLY ME??

c. Damn this guy may be amazing in court and damn good at what he does regarding legal theory, but he could use a lesson in the fact PERCEPTION is as much a part of the case and being SENSITIVE to clients is also important in being a good lawyer for those you serve.

d. HE HAS TO KNOW THAT. HE is a SHARP GUY So it also possible he just really wants to be done with my case! It's demanded more time and effort than he or I expected and he is holding to his quote of a flat rate darn cheap fee. I can't blame the guy if he doesn't really want to work for free! (THat just as likely an issue as the theory he is being paid off by Westely!)

So I have Told him to bill me by the hour as this matter has gone on longer than expected. I want to keep my attny happy so he serves me well! I want to compensate him for his outstanding work when in the courtroom.

Despite it all, even if he is not the sharpest when it comes to being aware of how proximity of sitting etc could appear.... Damn this attny IS REALLY OUTSTANDING when it comes to trial technique, and writing of motions etc... and in the end things that really do matter more than those other factors.

I figure if a judge is observant, well then he will be VERY observant. So if it struck him odd that we were seated in close proximity he would then also likely be aware of MY BODY LANGUAGE and the fact I was hugging the end of that bench looking ready to bolt in hyper vigilant mode with all the tenseness and acute awareness of a stalked animal. You can't hide that physical demenaor even if you try! (AND I HAVE BEEN TRYING.... I even understand why some have that URGE to drink to try to relax... as I went out the other night and as I was drinking my standard water and so aware that I just couldn't let go of that tension in my back I suddenly had that insight of why so many become alcoholics in response to trama! ITs that need to relax they have such trouble achieving! But I dance and write...)

So I sat there and tried to not bolt across the aisle to sit on the other side, although that was my urge!

Then my attny GETS UP AND LEAVES~ I should have gotten up then, but it was kind of like the deer in headlights moment for me.

I was just appalled. He wasn't representing me on the red herring ball that was thrown my way. I had deceided not to ignore it as the court could get some unspoken and unintended message, but also deceided I didn't need to even waste one iota of energy on that matter as it was a MOTION TO ENJOIN RELOCATION OF THE CHILDREN FROM LOUDOUN
and DUH
NOt likely... here I am ready to fight for our right to remain home and Westely act like I would possibly move with them????

Maybe he's been drinkin...

(Just joking.. but really, that is so ridiculous)

So I did what was likely the worst thing of all.

I went to that hearing PRO SE

OK I can hear the reaction of "OH NO!!!!"

Only a fool represents themself.

Well, to be really honest on that day I realized just why it is I wanted to be a lawyer in the first place.

Twisted as it may be- I had THE MOST FUN I have had since laughing with my bros on Thanksgiving.

YES It was that much fun!



Forget all the rest of lawyering... give me a trial and someone to cross examine and I have a blast.

It didn't even matter that it was ME that was being defended. It was STILL FUN.
It didn't matter that it was ME THAT WAS ATTACKED
It was still a blast to ask further questions and clarify the REAL picture by filling in some details that had been overlooked.

The way I look at lawyering, to be a good lawyer one presents an image they want seen. But when up against a BETTER lawyer, its hard to hold to that snippet as the reality of the big picture will be further developed.

And damn, if anything was confirmed in my mind last FRI- it was that I need the BAR because


So I need some work at editing. So I need some tweaking of skills. So I am a novicite and even though I could see initially that the matter on FRI was a red herring thrown out with the intent of getting some things presented and ON THE RECORD---

EVEN THOUGH I KNEW THE STRATEGY and then did get distracted and pulled into the fun of the game, EVEN WHEN I KNEW IT BETTER NOT TO PLAY,

EVEN THOUGH I knew the intent... it was STILL FUN.

The real intent of the red herring was clear the moment I was on the stand and asked "are you the author of a journal site on diaryland under msafire"

I proudly answered "YES" as I literally held onto the papers printed from my journal that the opposing counsel had handed to me, and said "This is my work"

I didn't let go.

He said "That's mine You can have a copy if you want"

I responded something like "This is mine. I have the right to hold onto it- in particular to refer to it for recorded recollection if you intend to ask me about anything in it."

I think it was the judg who said "The court can make a copy for you if you like"
to which I responded
"No- I have copies of all my work. I just wanted to refer to it if I am to be questioned about it now, as that is my creative work and I hold the rights to it"


The judge at that point stopped our case and said "I want to hear the other matters first and come back to this"

I sat there and he said something else to me like "this is going to require more time..."

And then I got the hint and asked "Oh, what do you want me to do? I'm waiting for direction"

I hadn't realized he was telling me to get off the stand! I think my brain wasn't processing what he said as I was working out the objection to the court making a copy of something that has not been entered into as evidence, and working out the violation of copyright argument in my head.



But as most people know, under copyright laws you need to get an author's PERMISSION to REPRODUCE, or further QUOTE FROM THEIR WORK.

And sorry, I have not granted permission for my work to be used to attack my character in a court proceeding against me.






But alas I didn't have the opportunity, as I became wise and realize I fell into the trap of even playing that move in this chess game that day.

So upon calling us back up to the stand I came to my senses and stopped the playing (fun though it was) and said
"Your honor, I have no objection to the motion, nor did I ever. I realized I was just responding to the arguing of it"

and that is just downright silly- To engage in an argument just because someone attacks me personally when making their argument for something thta they and I both want.

I think it indicative of my whole relationship with Westely. It reminds me of the fact he kept saying over and over again as if I was going to disagree and fall into the game of being pulled into an argument "YOU HAVE TO COME TO VA TO RUN THE FAMILY FARM THIS SUMMER. YOU HAVE TO QUIT YOUR JOB..." blah blah blah said in a contentious manner ready to fight. Then I kept responding "I can't wait! I know! The value of me farming is more than my Target income. You keep bringing this up AND I KEEP AGREEING.. I am excitd to go back home!"

That's just one little example (which comes to mind as at one sad point in the hearing Fri Westley dared to utter "She followed me here to MY HOUSE that I owned before we were married.. How does one FOLLOW someone when in their car with them at their not only request but actual BARKED ORDER!)

Westely was barking on Friday.

But instead of ignoring it like I have gotten used to doing, and replying calmly "Relax, I don't disagree with you" I felt I had to defend my character and address his lies that were uttered.

Silly of me.
But damn it was fun to uncover the reality of the picture he had distortedly presented out of focus.
It was reminiscent of the HS Debate Tournaments, or the Jessup Moot Court tournament.

Perhaps twisted that I could have so much fun when it is my OWN case!I just love oral advocacy though and realize that trial work is something I will likely be as good at as I was at Lincoln Douglas Debate and Moot Court. I just love extemporaneously responding in the moment.

And yes, only a fool represents him or herself... but in this case I STILL think that was wise, as I didn't clutter my attny's plate with this nonsense and told her "Its just noise, ignore it and focus on the reponse to the nuptial and the divorce action" I hadn't even had time to communicate with her about this ahead of time. (In fact I forgot about the matter until I found the soepena the night before and second guessed my intital strategy of not spending an iota of energy on it! A real funny thing is that my attny then DID show up to ask me if everything was OK and I told her about the FIRST hearing but TOTALLY FORGOT to even mention the 2nd one on the motion to enjoin moving! I was juggling that first ball and the second wasn't even on my radar at that time! She had gotten a message from me, and was there on another matter so checked in with me- but then I totally forgot the second matter and told her the other attny was there with me and handling the PPO matter so I was fine! ONly later did I realize why she was checking in... as I had actually left her a message regarding the 2nd matter being on the docket although I never talked to her about it!)

She can get a copy of the trial record as Westely did indeed pay for that. That in fact was his whole intent I am sure, to have some things recorded for him to be able to use them later.

I don't object to having documentation of his lying. That can only help me. He in fact did lie from the stand, and I have evidence to prove it.

However I do sincerely hope he gives up this adversarial stance, because although it is indeed fun to be intellectually challenged and think on my feet, I would sincerely much prefer to do so in a REAL game, not in LIFE, and would much prefer not to have to defend myself in the only effective manner which is to expose his lies.

To me it seems sad someone would intentionally create fictions and intentionally malign another's character in order to have their goals met. You would think there would be a more productive and less self destructive manner in which Westely could persue his goals for himself than attacking me.

To me its just a continuation of the Cycle of Abuse. But most of all, once again, when he is verbally attacking me I get the sense that Westley is instilling the most damage and the greatest abuse upon himself. He sets himself up so that his moments of weakness and vulnerability must be exposed to reveal that what he has claimed regarding me is not true.
In the end, Westely has to live with himself. He has to be the one to carry the burden of knowing that he has not honored the commandment "thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor" which directy refers to litigation! It is on his conscience how he behaves both in and out of court.

And it is on my conscience how I choose to respond to attacks, either with vengence and anger or fear, or with grace, dignity and compassion and joy. So I guess I don't feel too badly about having had fun on Friday! Joy in the process is at least better than bitterness!

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