What was next? Our whole life had been turned upside down. We were entering a brand new adventure. One we'd neither asked for nor wanted, but we had no choice.
So what's next.
That was the question. What to do now. We had no idea. This was brand new to us. I got on the internet. The first thing I did was google him. I would end up doing a lot of that. And it would be disastrous every time. There was an article. Detailing everything that he’d done. It also ended up in the local papers and the Washington Post. It turned out to be a very big deal. And it wasn’t easy to hide. Before we were able to see him in person we saw his mug shot in articles on the internet. I cried for an hour when I saw that picture.
I decided that I would try to visit him. I got on the county’s website and figured out when I could see him. I went that Saturday. By myself. I remember being sick to my stomach. Almost the same sick, nervous feeling I get each time I go see him. I didn’t know what to expect. I had never been inside a jail or even a police station. I didn’t know what to bring, or say, or do. I was scared. When I got to the jail I sat in my car for a while. Afraid to go in. I cried some. I wanted to run. Drive away. Just leave. But he needed me. And I needed him. I needed to see him with my own two eyes. As his big sister. To see if he was ok. Because that mug shot was horrible.
I finally got out of the car and asked a lady in the parking lot where I was supposed to go. I stood outside that door, took a deep breath, and went in.
I sat down and waited for my turn. Talked to a nice man that prayed for me. Soon it was finally my turn. I walked up to the window, turned over my ID, told him George’s name, and waited while he did his thing on the computer.
He told me I wouldn’t be seeing him that day. Sadness rushed over me as I asked him why. He was kind. He explained that he was still being processed and couldn’t have visitors until he was. He said it would be the next week and he’d have to fill out a form and told me what information George would need to fill it out. I was grateful for his kindness, but I was still disappointed. I left.
I cried in the parking lot. Composed myself enough to go home. Climbed in to bed, and cried some more. I spent a lot of time crying. In the car, at work, at home. I was so sad. And angry. I was so mad at myself. I was mad at him, but I blamed myself. And Steve. George had asked us for money, but we said no. He couldn’t give us a reason that he needed it, and we surely did not have it, so we said no.
Two words ran through my head. What if. Two very innocent words when separated but when you put them together they have a stronger impact. It is a horrible question to ask yourself. Over and over. Constantly wondering if you could have prevented this.
I hated myself. I blamed myself. How could I not. If I had just been there for him like I always was. Maybe this wouldn’t have happened. He never blamed me. Ever. He was mad. But not at me. Ever. No one ever blamed me. It was just me. And no one could convince me otherwise.