How I Narrowly Escaped the Clink

***Long post but true story. I have the cuff marks to prove it. Wink, wink.***

It's never been a life long goal of mine to see the inside of a prison cell. Call me crazy but I enjoy my freedom. I like to know that if I bend over to pick up a bar of soap I dropped while showering I'm not inviting others to sexually molest me.

Unless of course it's my husband in the shower with me. Hell, all I need to do is breathe in his direction and he's ready for action.

So when I almost found myself on the inside of the clink last Friday, mere hours before my Redneck roadtrip, I was more than a little worried.

Hell, I was darn near hysterical. Prison orange is not a complimentary colour against my skin tone.

As I watched the friendly neighbourhood R.C.M.P. officer take the complaint, the events leading up to this moment raced before my eyes leading me to wonder what I could have done differently to avoid my future jailbird status.

Except, there really wasn't much I would change. Except maybe I would have worn my purple shirt. And a push up bra.

I have mentioned before that my daughter Fric has had issues with being bullied at school. She is much like I was at her age, studious, gangly and eager to please. All of which ultimately lands her ass on a silver platter for the mean girl bullies of her school to munch on.

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There is a vast difference between her and me being bullied. Back then I would go home crying about some girl persecuting me and my parents would tell me to suck it up. Back then there were no metal detectors and surveillance systems in schools. Back then kids didn't bring weapons in their lunch kits and blindly shoot people like targets in a video game.

Back then I also had to walk seven miles to school, up hill both directions, in a raging blizzard with no shoes on, as well.

Still, times have obviously changed and bullying is not an issue just to be shoved on the back burner and ignored.

This was an issue that was not going to resolve itself, no matter how hard my daughter and I wished it. It was beginning to affect her soul, her grades, her very well being.

If your eleven year old daughter is unhappy, then trust me, the whole damn family is unhappy. Even the dog.

Boys are easier. They simply beat each other until someone cries uncle and then they move on. But the psychological terrorization of a few female pubescent teeny boppers is harder to deal with. Especially when it's leveled at your most beloved daughter.

Annoyed and frustrated and more than a tad pissed off, I took the bull by the horns when I was at a school function. I decided to confront the parent of the mean girl responsible for making my daughter feel like a pile of dung. Except I had no idea who she was or what she looked like.

I thought about walking through the gym and hollering "Hey, Mean Girl's Mom. Come get a piece of me."

But I'm a pansy. I have brittle bones. So I just wandered around looking for a woman who looked like she was getting a beaver wax. You know, twisted up face and kinda tense. That's how I pictured this woman.

I didn't have to look long or very hard. Her mother found me.

A great hulking brunette who towered over me and was spewing venom from her lips and steam from her ears.

Before I could even open my mouth to introduce myself she called me a tramp (based on my baggy jeans, over-sized sweater and ponytail) and obviously my daughter didn't fall far from the tree.

Now I'm used to people drawing assumptions about my personality because of the colour of my hair or the size of my waist. I'm used to people looking at my tattoos and nose ring and thinking I'm some punk rocker wanna be who is the scourge of society. I'm even used to being judged as an inadequate mom because I'm so young and my kids are so, well, old.

But I'm not used to my eleven-year-old daughter being called a whore. Especially from the woman who gave birth to the devil child who delights in abusing my child and has never even met me before.

You might say my hackles rose.

And when you back me into a corner, I don't bark.

I bite.

It is a long and sordid story and one I am not particularly proud of. Luckily for me, I had the forethought (must have been the flashing neon sign blinking 'Danger...Crazy Woman Up Ahead' to ask my in-laws to stay close and witness my conversation.

Suffice it to say in the span of ten minutes, I was bullied in the lobby of the school my children attend, tag teamed by the parents of the mean girl.

I was accused of (in no particular order):

-being a tramp.
-abusing my children.
-needing therapy.
-my children needed therapy.
-of not knowing just what my daughter and my reputations were.
-if I knew said reputations I would never show my face in public.
-of my daughter being the bully.
-informed my daughter is the most annoying and irritating child in the entire school.

and my personal favorite:

-it's no surprise my son died after having me for a parent.

Good times.

During this entire tirade, my hands remained on my hips as I looked up at the jolly giants glaring down on me (damn you genetics for not allowing me to grow past 5'8...and wouldn't you know it was the one day I chose not to wear heels out in public?) and I tried to be civil. I never raised my voice or volleyed any of my own vicious accusations.

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It's not to say I didn't want to, but I was in a public place. And these people were making more than enough of a spectacle, I didn't need to add any fuel to this inferno. Besides, I'll bite back later. And I'll leave teeth marks.

Thankfully, none of the children involved witnessed this degrading altercation.

After calling me brainless she and her husband stormed out of the school and left me shaking like a leaf in the hallway while trying to pick my in-laws jaws up from the floor.

I'm gonna guess the child who bullies my kid learned said behaviour from certain family members. Just a hunch.

It was when I had finally gathered my family around me and was leaving the school when I noticed the jolly giants talking to the R.C.M.P.

They were filing a complaint against ME. On the grounds that I physically threatened their child.

Must have been my heavy breathing and tugging at my nose ring. So threatening.

This is when I saw my future as the newest bitch in cell block C.

Turns out they spun quite the tale regarding the incident that had just occurred. Hell, I'm a real battle-weary bad ass according to them. Must be my tattoos. I intimidated them with my butterfly. Heh.

Thankfully, the R.C.M.P. had a heads up on the situation (before the jolly giants filed the complaint) from a respected member of the community who just happens to respect me. (Reminder to always be nice to strangers. You never know when they are going to bail your ass out of a legal jam.)

The R.C.M.P were in fact, more concerned with the slanderous venom my new friends just spewed and the fact that this woman was AN EMPLOYEE AT THE SCHOOL. A teacher's aid.

What the fack? This woman works with my kids? To hell with that. Now I AM pissed. Before I was mildly annoyed, aggravated and a little insulted. Now I'm seeing red.

After speaking with the friendly (and cute) cop, he told me I could press charges if I liked. I didn't like. That wouldn't resolve the underlying issue: their daughter is bullying my child.

On Monday, I met with the principal of the school along with a personal army of cute R.C.M.P. officers as my body guards.

(It's good to have cute boys with guns be on your side.)

You know the meeting is off to a bad start when the man you are meeting with confuses you for a new student looking to register. Sigh.

But the meeting was productive. I felt good about the outcome. No, I didn't demand her head on a platter. Although I could have. I did demand a policy review about privacy issues and employees and I know for a matter of fact this woman is getting her ass spanked. But I don't want to think about that.

I want to think about how I held myself together while my ass was being chewed. I want to think about the example I set for my kids, for my community. I didn't sink to this woman's (and her husband's) level. I didn't back down from my bullies. And while I certainly don't relish confrontation, I would do it all again if it means protecting my children.

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Things are looking up for Frac now. And the little mean girl is no longer a mean girl in my eyes. Just a kid who is confused and taught to behave a certain way. She's a good egg. She just has her own issues to deal with. And now, because of this brouhaha, they are being dealt with. Hopefully, she will stay the hell away from my daughter.

Maybe one day they may even become friends.

Maybe one day I will sprout a third boob. Don't laugh. It's possible.

I want my kids to know that I will always have their backs. But I want them to know that there is a way to deal with a crappy situation with grace and dignity. Even when you're being called a murdering, child abusing whore along the way.

The world isn't always a pretty place. Nor is it perfect or safe. There will always be unpleasant situations and circumstances to face and overcome. Even when you are a grown up and you hear the sweet rattle of handcuffs near your ears.

There will always be people who can't be trusted, and people who can't be nice.

But there will always be two people who love you no matter what the pain you face may be.

Your father and me.

I will always have your backs, kids. No matter how high the shit gets piled on me, I will always come out smelling like a rose because I have you both.

But when you get old enough to buy booze, you better be prepared to pop for a bottle or two of expensive red.

I've earned it.