Thump, thump, thump.
I hear my own heart pounding in my chest. The sound of blood hammering against my heart chambers fills my ears, stifling all other sounds around me.
The woman next to me is tall and thin. Her eyes are stern, and she evaluates me from behind thick, dark glasses. She sits there next to me, representing the State of Texas in a court case against me.
We sit side by side, two completely different women. She is polished, completely in control of every word she speaks against me, calculating her next sentence before the one she is speaking is out of her mouth. I am nervous, completely unsure of the words I am about to speak, and I have a nagging feeling that I am somehow not as prepared as I thought.
The judge speaks with a sharp tongue and a hint of sarcasm and obvious frustration as she addresses those in the courtroom behind me. I don’t want to get on her bad side, I joke to myself in a failed attempt to calm my still-thundering heart.
I sit straight and tall, trying to look as though I am filled with confidence, but as I listen to the prosecutor question the one and only witness, I am silently afraid that the judge will not believe me.
The prosecutor is finished and it is my turn. The judge looks at me, the prosecutor does not. As I begin to speak I am painfully aware that I am fumbling my words. I stumble over the very words I have practice so many times over the past few weeks. Although I speak truth, as I took an oath that I would, I feel like I look guilty.
And when I say “Your Honor” I can’t help but wonder if it sounds fake – as if I’m some twitty high school student who is sucking up to the teacher to try and get a good grade on a paper into which she put exactly zero effort. For the briefest of moments I flash back in my mind to all those glorious little girl years of playing pretend, and I am vaguely aware of how that little girl innocence could never know the stark contrast of what standing before a judge, defending your name and honor feels like in reality. I miss little girl innocence and days filled with blissful, hopeful, beautiful pretending.
My voice quivers, and in my mind I calculate how much money I’ll be parting with in the event that the case is not dismissed. Several hundred dollars.
I present my evidence. I tell the judge that I am a victim of identity theft. I submit signed affidavits, police reports, and other documents as proof of my innocence.
The prosecutor deliberates with a court clerk while I sit there looking at the judge. I look at my file, filled with important papers that serve as my only proof of identity theft.
She returns to the seat beside me and looks at the judge and states without any emotion, “The State moves to dismiss.” The judge makes a note on her paperwork and looks down at me with the words I’d hoped to hear, “Case dismissed, you’re free to go.”
I fairly float out of the courtroom. More than three years of dealing with this particular case is finally over.
And as I walk the few blocks to my car I revel in the fact that my identity – my true identity – cannot be stolen. It is secure, deeply rooted in the One who calls me His own. And nothing can take that away from me.
Are you ready to be an inspiration? (To find out the purpose of this community, please read this post.)
- Please visit the others who link up and leave kind, encouraging words for them. This is about encouraging, inspiring, and building up one another.
- If you tweet about linking up, please use the hashtag #desiretoinspire so we can find each other.
- Link up your own quality, read-worthy posts.
- Focus on how you can be an inspiration, not what inspires you.
- You do not have to follow ARD, but of course I’d love it if you would.
- Link up your specific posts, not your blog’s homepage.
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- Please link back to A Royal Daughter in your post (using the button below, or a text link back) or add this linky party to your linky party list.
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I hope your week is blessed. Don’t forget that a new month of #Prayer Dare will launch tomorrow. In March we’ll be praying for our voices + the influence we have with the words we say. I hope you’ll join us.
Business + Family Q & A with Cliptomania
ARD: Is your family supportive of your business? How do you use your business to bless your family and strengthen the family relationship?
LL: My family is very supportive of everything I do. My six children are grown and some have families of their own and they do all they can to spread the word about my business and be my “walking advertisements.” They often come to shows and help me set up or break down, they’ve had parties for me and when they need a quick gift for someone, they know Mom’s always got something pretty in her bag! They have also helped me learn some of the new technology I needed to run my business. My sweet husband is always here after a long show to give me a meal and get me to bed and to encourage me when things don’t go as well as I think they should. I don’t know what I would do without them.