My life began as the third child of a dirt farmer in Hillsboro, Texas. I was lucky to have been born to wonderful parents, but farmers were poor and money was scares for my parents. My parents decided to leave the farm and seek their future in the big city when I was seven.
Most of my childhood was spent in Pasadena, Texas, where my father got a job working in plastic factory on the Houston ship channel. My parents had big dreams for their children and each of us dutifully went off to college after graduating from high school. I choose to go to Baylor University in Waco, Texas, where I graduated with a degree in Biology and Chemistry.
My path eventually lead me to McAllen, Texas where I met my husband, worked as chemist in the breath testing program for drunk drivers and gave birth to my three wonderful children. However, my life was not making me happy because my husband had some kind of mental disease as well as suffering from alcoholism.
There are many types of spousal abuse and I endured verbal abuse for about 14 years. I kept lying to myself that it would be possible to endure until my children were grown and gone, but as time went on, I finally realized the futility of that and asked my husband to leave the home—He refused.
I consulted with an attorney and filed for divorce—advising him that whenever I had tried to leave my husband before he had made threats to kill himself so I was concerned that might happen again this time. My lawyer filed the divorce and got my husband to leave the house and I was right—the suicide threats were once again made.
My husband moved into an apartment and saw the children (mainly my son) on a fairly regular basis as the divorce proceeded through the court system. I was concerned about how my daughters were affected by their father’s lack of attention to them and addressed that issue with my attorney, who offered no solutions.
As divorces sometimes go mine dragged on—as social studies were conducted as well as psychological evaluations. My husband had decided he wanted custody of our son but not our daughters. Although I told the psychologist my husband had made threats of suicide I was not taken seriously. Eventually all the studies were complete and my husband and I went to mediation to attempt to settle the issues between us.
The issue of utmost concern to me was custody of our children but my husband seemed most concerned about the money. During the course of the mediation he agreed to my having custody of all three children if I would agree to take less money. Naturally, I took the opportunity to end the custody fight and finally put the divorce behind me.
However, my husband still did not want to get divorced and continued to do everything he could to slow down the divorce. After a few weeks, my attorney and I decided that the stall tactics needed to end and set the divorce for a hearing. As usual, my attorney notified my husband’s attorney of the court date about a week away.
The next day a police officer came to my office to deliver the news to me that my husband’s body had been found. I had to ask to have the news repeated because I was in shock. Unfortunately, it was true; my husband had finally carried out his threats of suicide and killed himself.
Another nightmare followed as his family tried to make life even more difficult for me. Now I was forced to deal with the issues of three children, grieving for their father, handling my own grief about his death, and fighting his family. Once again, my attorney tried to help me with the situation; once again, his help was inadequate to meet my needs.
Months passed and I was dealing with a teenage daughter, who was feeling guilt about her father’s death and expressing that guilt and grief by very self-destructive behavior, including drug use, alcohol use, sex, stealing from me and truancy. I decided that it would be necessary to make major changes in my life and the lives of my children to halt the self destruction that was going on in my home.
At this point I decided that my path would lead me to law school. I applied and was accepted at St. Mary’s Law School, built a house in San Antonio, and moved my children here. With the move, I was able to separate my older daughter from her inappropriate friends and give her a fresh start. She continued to receive therapy for several years and was finally able to put her life in order.
I thrived in the academic atmosphere that St. Mary’s provided and in three years graduated summa cum laude. My career goal was now to help other people who were going through a life crisis. I opened a law practice and for the last five years I have been able to help others to improve their lives, which is very fulfilling to me.
My children are now thriving. My older daughter is now 24, the mother of my two beautiful grandchildren and still lives with me and her children. My son works full time and my younger daughter will graduate from High School in May 2007, with her eyes set on a college education and eventually medical school.
Let me help you make the changes that are needed to make your life better as well. Call me at my office (210) 224-8881, and I will meet your legal needs in an efficient and compassionate manner.