I've been meaning to put down my thoughts on paper about this incredible day before any of the details slip from my mind.
I knew the final adoption hearing was a mere formality. Our sweet girl was already chosen and planned to be our daughter since the beginning of time, and we have been a family since the day we laid eyes on her and held her for the first time. But the special thing about this day was that the rest of the world would now know what we did.
Like all new moms, I questioned myself in those early weeks of her precious life. Was I doing everything right? Was I being the perfect mom? But underlying those common fears were ones that said, if I'm not, will someone change their mind? So when we stood before the judge and he signed the papers, that all melted away. She is ours and no one can ever take her away.
My hubby and I were there for the hearing, of course, but we were also joined by my mom and stepdad, my dad and stepmom, and my stepsister. My dad and stepmom made the trip from halfway across the country. Afterwards, we all went to a nearby restaurant for a little celebration. Although my parents are civil to each other, their interactions in the past 15 years have been slim, and the only occasions where they have been seen in the same room have been my wedding and when my brother came home from Iraq with his Marine squadron. I looked around the table to see them chatting and marveled at how this little girl has not only made complete a gaping hole in our hearts, but she has brought together those I love and made so many people happy.
Especially me. :-)