Cecelia came through the door the other day with half of her head shaved. The other half has not been cut since she and I were split up almost 10 months ago so it’s way too long and tangly. It seems no Michael means no taking care of Cecelia anymore. Seriously.

She showed up 5 times with no underwear and her mother had to be spoken to. Then she showed up with stitches in her head for over a month, the very first visit we had, almost 10 sad and frustrating months ago now.

She also showed up with 3 pounds of dirt under her fingernails and showing up covered in brown magic marker all over her arms and in a pajama onesie at last week’s visit. She isn’t bathing and she’s wearing dirty clothes on top of that.

I asked her what she had for breakfast last week, and her response was “candy.” When I gave her an unapproving look, her response was “What? I like candy?” (Whenever I aks her about activities she shouldn’t be participating in but is because she’s being neglected and has no supervision, that’s her default reply: “What? I like doing [fill in the awful blank].” And I cannot say anything about it or else the center will punish me by cancelling a visit with my daughter.

So doing whatever she wants is also part of my 6-year-old’s life now. That will end as well as my step-daughter’s life which was squandered. And, ironically, where Cecelia stays all the time now. With teenagers. One who I tried to help raise with great resistance when any pursuit of exceptionalism and/or self-discipline was mentioned.

That’s resulted in the child of a college teacher not going to college. A real leader for a mother.

Today, I wasn’t allowed to give her warm clothes, like gloves and a winter hat. I had to fill out a form for her mother to approve me giving her clothes since her mom won’t and other items her mom won’t get for her. Doll clothes, crafting supplies, NICE clothing that’s not torn or dirty, and third-hand. Because they’re considered gifts even though they are her own things. It will take 2 weeks at least to get an answer whether I can give Cecelia her things or not. That center is nothing but a house of idiocy.

Her mom was 20 minutes late to our 60-minute visit today and told the center it was because of traffic. Cecelia said it was because she forgot. I made sure to let the staff know she lied, as always, but no one seemed to care. Her mom will lie about ANYthing even if there are no consequences to her for telling the truth. That’s the person she is, and I had to curb that behavior all throughout our relationship. I had to talk her out of lying to people constantly.

Like smoking and drinking heavily, it’s a return to her natural bad habits from before our meeting back in 2007.