Welp, the moment we’ve all been dreading went down on this week’s episode of Grey’s Anatomy — Callie and Arizona had their custody hearing. And, just as we expected, it was brutal.
Before we move forward, suffice it to say there are pertinent plot points ahead. So, spoiler alert! Avert your eyes if you haven’t yet watched.
Having said that, can we all just agree that nobody really won in the Calzona custody battle? I feel gutted after watching both of them experience such heartbreak, especially in light of the fact that there are so many real-life couples going through the same thing as we speak.
More: Grey’s Anatomy: Can Callie and Penny please just break up already?
As a child of a “broken” home, I always empathize strongly with children stuck in the middle of their parents’ divorce. But because my mother and father had a pre-arranged agreement by which she retained sole custody of me and my siblings, we were able to circumvent the particular hell that is going through painful and drawn-out custody proceedings.
Coming into this week’s episode, my loyalty was on the fence. I’m not ashamed to admit that I was a Calzona shipper, so I’m clearly fond of both characters.
Thus far this season, though, Arizona has irked me on more than one occasion. Remember the whole spilling-the-beans-about-April’s-baby debacle? Not a fan. Then Callie dropped the bomb on Arizona that she wanted to move Sofia across the country, becoming offended when Arizona didn’t just roll over and concede defeat.
To be frank, they’ve both been guilty of questionable judgment lately. That does not make them bad mothers. It makes them human. I get it.
So my hope coming into the court hearing was that one of them would be that mother — the one who couldn’t stand to put their child through the pain that would inevitably be caused by a permanent rift between her parents, and who would sacrifice what she wanted for what their daughter needed.
In my opinion, that person was Arizona and (shocker!) I believe that’s why the judge awarded her primary custody of Sofia.
During the proceedings, I did not think that was the way things would shake out. Arizona was crucified on the stand for being a mother who is successful at her job and who occasionally blows off steam with her boss through trivia night at a local bar.
Neither side was completely innocent in the tactics they used but, while Arizona toed the line of impropriety, Callie simply took it too far. She said things that can’t be unsaid. She took personal, intimate, trusted knowledge of Arizona and twisted it into a weapon.
Then, something happens no one expects. Arizona gets an urgent page from April. Realizing her patient’s child will die if she doesn’t go, she makes the impossible decision to leave. Before going, though, she explains that she knows Sofia will be OK no matter what because she and Callie are her mothers.
I can’t imagine making a more difficult or selfless decision than that, given the circumstances.
Upon her return to the courthouse, Callie approaches her and says no matter what happens she knows Arizona is a good mother, too. Um, too little too late much? Arizona calmly tells Callie she would never have let anyone say the kind of things to Callie that Callie’s lawyer said to her.
Not to mention, I swear I detected a hint of smugness as Callie said those words to Arizona. It was as if she was already convinced the verdict would fall in her favor.
After what seems like a million years of holding our breath, the judge comes back with her ruling. Although we don’t see it, it’s easy to deduce when Arizona shows up at Meredith’s house to take a happy Sofia “home.”
Understandably, Callie dissolves into tears. This sucks — that’s the hard truth of the matter. But given how things played out, I think the judge made the right decision. Do you?