It's evening here in Idaho, the sun has set. The day has been long. And I only broke down once, horribly so, in the courtroom. It happened when my sister's lawyer was relaying the story about my sister coming all of the way to Portland, Oregon, and needing to come and stay at our home. I told her "No, not until you're finally ready to get yourself clean." She did get clean, right after that. I've always lived with that moment of saying, "No." Anyway, when the lawyer was telling that to the judge today, I sobbed. The judge was a very pleasant woman. I could tell that she really did care for my sister. In spite of the horrible situation, the sentence was minimized, in my opinion. Looks like this: 120 days in jail to begin 12/17. Eight years probation. Three years driver's license suspension. A hefty $$$ fine. AA meetings, psychiatric evaluations, and other assorted "get your act together" instructions. They did not take her away today. My honey and I drove her to the jail right after court and got her all checked in and scheduled to report on 12/17. I took her driver's license from her and handed it to the lawyer. And then I took my sister's keys from her. Seemingly nothing to most, I know. Monumental to me. My heart is broken. Her spirit is broken. But the sentencing is behind us. Our time with our niece has been fairly good. She is a tough little girl. A fighter. I'm not sure she understands completely....but it's good. She knows that she's loved and cared for. You'll all never know how much I count on and appreciate your comments and emails. Again, I close with tears in my eyes. Will they ever stop? Thanks for caring and listening.