On June 15 it will be a full year since I filed my petition for declaration of nullity. Nothing has happened. My expectations of the justice system here are quite low to begin with, but even so, I am getting impatient. And I am a patient person.
My uncontested petition still has not had a single trial. A couple of times, I was scheduled for a pre-trial conference, whatever that means. But the first time, in November, I arrived at the courthouse to find my lawyer seated on a wooden bench waiting to tell me that the conference had been postponed. The court was moving. I was disappointed but it was okay. The move was long overdue. It was the same court I had gotten hitched in some fifteen years before, and even then the physical condition of the place was pathetic.
I received something in the mail about the conference being moved to March 25. I awaited that date. On my way to the new courthouse, however, I received a text message from my lawyer that our meeting had been postponed again because there was no fiscal. No fiscal my ass. This is my life we are talking about.
And tonight I am having dinner with a friend to celebrate the resolution of her own case that she had filed months after I filed mine. I am happy for my friend though just a teeny bit envious. Then again, she deserved the swifter action -- she paid 100 grand, I think, and sought help to find a friendlier venue with friendlier court officers as well.
I have yet another friend who filed her petition in some Mindanao town, paid 200 grand, and found her certificate of nullity in the mail after only two weeks.
Paying anything more than what is aboveboard is not an option for me. I'm still barely able to put away a little money as savings every payday. I even feel guilty for taking more than three cab rides a week, never mind that I work damn hard! My arrangements with my high-profile lawyer is very, er...charitable. Most of all, I feel my case will stand on its own. I am not saying that my friends' cases were not strong enough -- God knows they were -- what I am saying is that I will wait it out, and hope it will not be in vain.
I deserve to be free of my ghosts and be able to start over. I will wait -- no matter how long it takes.