Thursday, March 15, 2007

Prayer for Judgement

Ever since I got pulled over for speeding six weeks ago I have been worried about going to court. I was speeding 16 miles over the posted speed limit. Luckily the officer left off the "work zone" part of it--that would have made it a lot worse! If I would have been driving just one or two miles less I could have paid the ticket through the mail.

As it was, however, I had to go to court. My court date was yesterday. I had no idea what to expect. Six weeks ago I just imagined that Chris would take the morning off and I would go down to the Durham Courthouse and pay my fine. I soon learned that it would not be that easy. Chris informed me that he would be out of town and that meant I would have to find someone to watch my kids.

I didn't want to ask one of my friends because my "ticket" said I had to be there at 7:45 a.m. I called a girl who used to be in my ward and she is now in college. I had heard from many people that she is a good sitter. I felt confident in her abilities so I called her. Luckily she was on spring break when I needed her, otherwise she had a full day of classes.

As the date approached I realized that I didn't have to go to the Durham Courthouse but I had to go to the Raleigh Courthouse since I got pulled over in Wake County, not Durham County. Silly me. That added more stress to my situation.

I really worried about this whole thing and earlier this week I got online again to make sure I knew where I was going--I get a little anxiety when it comes to finding and going to new places. There were few details about what would happen when I got there. I found some links to other websites that gave me some insight into what kind of trouble I was in. Here are some phrases that fall under the category of speeding 16 miles over the speed limit:
  • Licence revoked
  • Insurance points
  • 45% increase in insurance premium for 3 years

I considered, too late, hiring an attorney. I also read somewhere about "Prayer for judgement" although I had no idea what it meant. I talked to my neighbor the night before my court date and she told me to ask for a "prayer for judgement". Neither of us knew what it meant.

So the morning finally came and, needless to say, I had said many regular prayers up to this point and the blessings were already starting to come. Both my kids slept through the night (miracle!) and so did I. I was shocked when my alarm went off at 6:00 and I had not been awakened for anything in the night.

My babysitter arrived and I left for Raleigh. I was a little late but I had learned that I could actually go anytime between 7:45 and 3:30. I just wanted to get it over. I easily found parking and walked to the building. I went through the metal detector and asked the security guard where I was supposed to go. He pointed to a room and I proceeded.

I walked into the room and there was a long line of people, none seemed to know if they were in the right place. There were no signs anywhere that directed me to where I needed to go so I just stayed in line and eventually someone who had been there before mentioned that this was the right line.

As I stood in line to "check in", which I later found out, I looked around at all the people in that room and there were only a handful of people who were, what I would consider, normal. I would not group myself with this crowd of people in any other situation.

After I finally got checked in I was shuffled off to another line, the DA line. The only other line was the "magistrate" line and I heard things coming from that line like "underage, possession of alcohol, illegal possession of marijuana", etc. I think most of the people in my line were for traffic violations though. This line was much slower than the first line.

It was finally my turn to talk to the DA. He said he could reduce my charge to 9 miles over instead of 16. I looked at him and he kind of smiled and said, "Is there anything else you would like to ASK me???????" I considered just taking it and paying for the charge instead I chuckled and said "Can I ask for a 'prayer for judgement'?" He smiled and told me to go to the courtroom around the corner.

When I went into the courtroom it was almost full. I thought it would be at least another hour before the judge called my name and wondered if this would be worth my time. The only easily-accessible seat was on the very front row. I could easily hear the conversations between the judge and other "criminals". Most of them were speeders, like me, and asking for a "prayer for judgement". I soon realized what I was asking for. Since I had no other speeding tickets on my record I could ask for a "prayer for judgement" and it would be like a warning, except I would have to pay court costs, $110. To my surprise, I was only in there about 15 minutes.

The judge was very nice and in a very good mood. I don't know if he is always like that but it was refreshing to see someone enjoying this kind of job so much. I felt fortunate to stumble upon this phrase and it will be my duty to pass it on to anyone who needs it.

I went home to find everything in order. Sariah was an awesome babysitter. She dressed and fed both kids, cleaned up, did Kennedy's hair, put Tristan down for a nap and was playing with Kennedy. Kennedy didn't want her to go home and asked me if Sariah could come over again. Yes, but hopefully under different circumstances!

Glad that is over!

Sunday, March 11, 2007

*#$%&! Weekend

I have been writing the last several days but each time I "post" it disappears. I don't know what's wrong with my blog. It's probably my computer. Like everything else I own it's about to die. Next month will be our 11-year anniversary and we have been in school or residency training ever since and only living on one income except for the year Chris was an intern and we saved his earnings for a down payment on a house so it was like one income.
Anyway, it's been a crappy weekend-no pun intended. Tristan still has diarrhea and he still just doesn't feel well. He actually slept pretty well last night. He woke up around 4 or 5 depending on if you had changed your clock already. He was pretty upset so I nursed him. After I started I had a thought that his diaper probably needed to be changed and nursing him would calm him down and then he would get upset when I changed him. I nursed him anyway and as soon as he was finished he vomited all over both of us so it was upsetting anyway!
It was quite comical today because I had one child sleeping and one child awake almost the whole day. As soon as I put Kennedy down for a nap Tristan woke up from his morning nap. Kennedy woke up about two minutes after I put Tristan down for his afternoon nap.
We have had such beautiful weather the past few days but haven't been able to enjoy it much. This afternoon I opened the sliding glass door to the deck and let the kids play outside. Tristan was in shorts, it was that warm.
I had a little emotional breakdown yesterday. I decided that I would not go to church today and I had a lot of things I needed to take care of there. That meant a lot of phone calls and asking others to do my job. I hate that. It's quite draining taking care of a sick child. I miss Chris too. I'm never quite 100 percent when he isn't around. Anyway, I called my neighbor Sheila because we planned to watch a movie and have dinner together. She could tell I wasn't quite right and I just started to cry. She came right over and sat with the sleeping kids while I went to the grocery store. I don't know what I will do without her after we move.
Next weekend will be better. . . .I hope!