Sunday, February 19, 2012

A little more about our Court Day

After reading my last post, I realized that I wrote it really quickly as a "catch-up" and didn't do our court day justice. February 2, 2012, the day an orphan became a son, was a perfect day. As I mentioned before, we woke up very early, put on our dressy clothes for court, and ran to get our boy. I remember holding him that morning and being so nervous, I literally had butterflies in my stomach. We had been praying and hoping for this day, the day we would officially add our first son to our family.
The ride to court seemed like forever. Jonathan was holding my hand and I kept giving him the looks that says..."I'm pretty freaked out right now." I had heard horror stories of families who were not approved at court for one reason or another. The court room was nothing like I imagined. It was basically a big square room with chairs lining the walls. The majority of the people in the room were Ethiopian and there was a lot of staring going on. A security guard kept coming in and telling us to be quiet. We waited and waited. The judge hadn't shown up. It is her prerogative. If she doesn't think she is of sound mind on a certain day, she just doesn't have to come to work. We were looking at Woudneh with panic in our eyes. He wasn't very reassuring. Court was closing for three weeks so if we didn't get this done today or Friday, we would be coming back in three weeks. Finally, they let us know that an assistant judge would be filling in. In the words of Woudneh, "it's okay but it would be better if it were the normal judge." Again, not encouraged.
When they call you back, you literally walk into a small office to meet with the judge, then you walk back into the big waiting room for everyone to stare and try to guess what just happened in there. The first adoptive family goes back, gone for 4 minutes, comes out crying. Tears of joy? Tears of sadness? We don't know but I was freaked out. They call us next. I was super nervous, Jonathan was cool as always.
We walk into this very small office with the judge sitting behind a very average looking desk. She can't be more than 20. She is thumbing thumbing thumbing through our paperwork. We had been instructed to ONLY say the word yes....yes...yes.
She begins, "do you have any children?"
"Hold old is she?"
"UMMMMM (this is not a yes or no question) 18 months"
Then we had a series of miscommunication about if she was adopted or biological.
"Have you seen your son?"
"How was he?"
Again not a yes or no question. We are both thinking, short and sweet. I say "Beautiful" Jonathan says "Great." I giggle.
Then she says a bunch of things of which I remember,
"You realize this is a binding agreement and it cannot be reversed."
Then the single most precious word I have heard in a long long time...
I immediately start crying. Now I'm realizing why the last family came out crying. All of this waiting and hoping and praying and then you go into an office for 4 minutes and with one word, we have added a son to our family. Wow...very very emotional.
I walk out to all eyes on me, trying to guess what just happened. Jonathan gives our friends the thumbs up so everyone now knows they are tears of joy.
We had a big celebration lunch and then got to go play with our son for the rest of the afternoon. It really was the perfect day.
Each milestone of this adoption process has been a sweet one. It was so sweet when we submitted our paperwork. It was so sweet when we got our referral. It was so sweet when we got our court date. It was so sweet when we met our son for the first time. It was so sweet to be approved at court and legally be the parents of this precious boy. The sweetest of all will be when we get to bring him to his forever home. I can't wait for that day!!!


  1. Ahh, this made me cry!! Congratulations!! Can't wait to meet him!!!

  2. Wow, awesome! Do you know when you can bring him home? Yes, I'm stalking you tonight on FB & your blog : )

    1. I love a good stalking! Probably not for two to three more months...if we are lucky :(