Bethany groaned in frustration as the doorbell rang. “Grand Central Station,” she muttered as she stepped over the toys scattered through the living room. “What now?”
The doorbell rang again. “Hold your horses. I’m coming.”
She paused briefly to toss some dirty socks in the direction of the laundry room. “The bin is ten feet from the door. You’d think they could at least make it that far.”
The doorbell rang again just as she pulled the door open. “Really? Didn’t your mother teach you patience?” she asked before her mind registered the policeman standing in front of her. “Oh. Um. Can I help you?”
“Ma’am. We’ve gotten a report of vandalism.”
“Really? We just got home. I haven’t noticed anything.” Bethany glanced around the yard, searching for damage.
“No, Ma’am. Not your property. The complaintant mentioned that your kids were involved.”
“Excuse me?” Bethany closed the door against her thigh, sandwiching herself between it and the doorjamb as if trying to block the officer out of her life.
He handed her a packet of papers. “We believe your boys were involved because of the descriptions given at the scene.”
Bethany scanned the paperwork, her eyes zeroing in on the date. “Today? This says the incident happened today. It couldn’t have been my boys…”
“Ma’am, everyone says that. The court date is on the paperwork. Please make sure you and the boys are there on time so we can proceed quickly and decide what type of punishment is necessary.”
“We just got home from Logan. There’s no way my kids were involved.”
“I’m guessing you have fabricated evidence to support this?” he smirked.
“Fabricated? What happened to innocent until proven guilty and all that?”
The officer leaned forward and pointed to the date circled in yellow highlighter. “Here’s the date. Thank you for your time.” He turned and stalked off her cluttered porch.
Could this day get any worse? She thought as she watched the squad car back out of her driveway before she closed the door. Her fists tightened, squishing the summons. Moving through the living room, she kicked the toys out of the way before slumping into the recliner. She shrieked in alarm and leapt out of the seat, then turned and looked for the offending toy that had jabbed her backside. “Stupid Transformers.” Frustrated, she pitched the toy into the toybox as she sank into the plush softness.
Tears blurred her vision as she reviewed the crimpled pages. The incident happened this morning well after they had left for Logan. Her children were named as possible participants but the neighbor hadn’t been positive of their identities because he had only seen their backs as they retreated down the alley.
Bethany breathed a sigh of relief, knowing that the dentist would make a statement on her behalf. She also had all her receipts and could get her bank to print out a statement. She vividly recalled the policeman’s words, harshly indicating that her kids were definitely to blame. She would do everything in her power to help her kids avoid the bogus charges.
She believed the police were “gunning” for her kids. The boys had been in the proverbial wrong place at the wrong time. The real culprits had been the Stake President’s twins and the Relief Society President’s oldest son. No one had believed her kids at the time and when the sentence had been handed down, her boys had endured the punishment without complaint.
The real hurt had happened when the Stake President had visited their ward and had called her family to repentance citing the quote by David O. McKay. She recalled his words vividly.
“David O McKay tells us ‘No success can compensate for failure in the home’. I tell you this, A mother’s place is in the home. Do everything in your power to remain in the home where your children need you the most. Children need to be nurtured and a mother cannot do this in the workplace.”
Holding her head high, she had ignored the condescending glares. Tears flowed down her cheeks just as they had that day. Sliding from the chair and onto her knees, she poured her heart out to her Heavenly Father begging for his comfort and help.
An overwhelming feeling of warmth filled her, comforting and buoying up her spirits. Rising to her feet, she attacked the cluttered living room with a vengeance as she created a defense plan. Within minutes, the clutter disappeared replaced by calm and order.
Have a happy Sunday!