Whenever a new history is written, the old histories all have to be thrown out. Robbing people of their actual history is the same as robbing them of part of themselves. It's crime!
The girls now had to accept this new way of life as the norm. They had to learn it was best (and safer) not to question what they were being told about their father. Lies could no longer be challenged and secrets had to remain hidden. They were now forced to forget what they had previously known about me and had to start living a life in denial.
For the first couple of weeks after I lost my job, I was too busy writing up a wrongful termination case to notice what was happening to Mary. I was feverishly working day and night detailing my job history in a document I was going to present to the EEOC, and I was trying to get all of this finished before I was evicted. When I was finished with it, I took it to the EEOC office in Minneapolis and they accepted my case as worthy of investigating for age and disability discrimination.
And just like I knew losing Mary had nothing to do with my parenting performance, I knew losing my job had nothing to do with my job performance. I had even received a letter from the governor praising my work at the State Hospital. I knew there was another reason my boss was trying to fire me. After all, he had told me I would lose my job if I didn't give Mary to Social Services, but I dismissed this at the time as just a way for him to harass me to get me to quit.
When I saw that Mary's behavior towards me now was more than just one of her temporary outbursts, I began to suspect that losing her and losing my job have something to do with each other. It seemed like more than a mere coincidence that I could lose both Mary and my job at the same time, and that Mary's social worker and mom would be back in her life while these things were happening. And it seemed like much more than a coincidence that my both my boss and Mary's social worker would not only have threatened me for the same thing (either give Mary back to Social Services or face consequences), but that they would exact their penalties of me for not giving in to their threats, at the same time as well.
And now the same social worker who had threatened me was back in Mary's life doing what she had wanted to do for the longest time — separate Mary from me. I had to wonder how these things weren't connected.
She also started hanging out with her mom for the first time in years. And while I welcomed their reunion (because Mary needed a mother in her life), I had to wonder why this was happening now. Why was her mother suddenly befriending her at this time when she had refused to even care for her when I brought her back from the group homes? Why the sudden change of heart? Why was she giving Mary her approval and accepting her back in her life at the same time Mary was rejecting me? And why were these things all taking place at the same time Mary's social worker was back her life?
I knew Mary better than anyone and I knew this wasn't like her. I don't think she was making these decisions on her own. I think someone was manipulating her and maybe even threatening her — at least it seemed like someone here in Mankato was doing this. Someone who wasn't in Oregon…