Thursday, March 19, 2009

he's bonafide...

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Well, it's official...legal and binding. Asher is ours. Our family has been in what is called a supervisory period for the past 7 months. Since placement, and when Asher was two days old, we were given physical charge over him. Or in other words, the adoption agency transferred physical custody of Asher to us, as his prospective adoptive parents. During that time, we assumed all legal and financial responsibility for his care, nurture, support, and protection...as if he had been born to us. However, during this supervisory period, the agency claimed legal custody and guardianship of our son. Which meant that at any time during the supervisory period, they had the right to take him away from us. Of course, I was never worried about that. We have always know that he was meant to be with us...that he has always been a part of our family. I have always felt that it was in Asher's best interest to be placed with us. We have done our best to ensure a loving home environment for him. We have cherished him, and cared for him, loved him, and delighted in him..as if he were ours...because he is ours. We have done, and still do, all in our power to see that he's happy, and comfortable, and safe. We had three supervisory visits subsequent to placement; and I'm fairly confident that our love for our son, as well as our capacity to meet his needs as his parents, must have been apparent to the case worker each time she visited our home. So even though I never feared that they might take him away from us, I still anxiously awaited the day that we would take him to court and have the judge declare him ours.

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Our dreams were finally realized last Friday, as we entered district courtroom W49 of the Matheson Courthouse in Salt Lake City. We were actually escorted through the courtroom, and directly into the judge's chambers , which made the whole experience a bit more personal and intimate. After our family members filed in and everyone got settled, John and I, as well as the social worker representing the adoption agency, were placed under oath. Our attorney, who is also a dear friend of ours, proceeded to ask a series of questions to both the social worker, and then to us. We were asked such questions as When were you married? Are you still married? When was Asher born? When was he placed in your care? and Are you both at least 10 years older than him? Then came time for us to sign the Consent and Agreement of Adopting Parents. And that's when the emotions set in...not just for us, as his parents, but for most everyone in attendance, including Jeri, our attorney. By signing this agreement, she said, you are stating that you are willing to take upon all rights and responsibilities of being a parent to Asher. YES! we said in unison. And this is what you want? YES! And you're desiring to do this of your own free will and choice? YES! And you understand that once you do this, he will be your own natural child, and will be treated as such? YES!
She then asked Ruby if she wanted Asher to be her brother, and thankfully Ruby nodded her head in the affirmative. I couldn't even believe how happy I felt when the judge granted the adoption (based on the documents and our testimony), and declared it final. It was one of the neatest, most tender moments of my life. And what's crazy, is that it's almost as if our little mister knew what was happening, and could sense the significance and importance of the day's events. He was just as happy as could be the entire day...so proud to be all dressed up in his little suit...smiley, and bouncy the entire time. And in true Asher form, he even threw up all over the judge's desk. It, of course, wouldn't have been official without his bonafide seal of approval.

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with the honorable Judge Peuler, in her chambers

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with Jeri, our attorney


17 comments:

Angela said...

Congrats to you guys! Your family is beautiful and Asher is just too cute in his little suit! Everyone just looks so happy! Sounds like it was a great day (aside from the throw up)!

Kat and Steve said...

Congratulations, you guys! He is such a lucky boy to be in your family!

ahe said...

What an awesome experience. I can't wait for the sealing!

Sarah said...

Yeah!! Thank you for sharing this. As a birth mom, it is neat to hear more of what goes on in the adoption, on the adoptive family side. I never knew that it was like that. What beautiful pictures.

natalie eve said...

yay nicole! that makes me so happy. glad everything went well!!

KellyB said...

wow, that is so amazing. What a great story. I am so happy for you guys, I teared up reading that story. I love it. Love you guys.

Ethel Carola Aredes Tapia said...

estoy llorando de la alegria de saber que tu pequeño por fin es tuyo y que no tienes que estar temiendo de devolverlo
amiga se cuanto amor uno puede sentir por los hijos se que unos padre pueden desarrollar mucho amor por un hijo lo hayas fecundado o no uno sientoel mismo amor por todos por igual
y yo mejor que nadie se amiga que el dolor es terrible cuando te lo arranca de tu lado
por ello muchas felicidades por ser por fin los padres legales del pequeño hombrecito.
te quiero mucho amiga

Rachel said...

Oh my gosh, I'm SO excited for you guys!!!! That just made my day. He could not look cuter in his little suit!

Brooke said...

Congratulations! Your hair looks great:)!

me said...

He really is a handsome little guy!
So happy for you and your family! Love you guys.

buddens said...

My favorite part is that in the picture with the judge, if you look closely, Asher looks like his signing for sure one "I love you" -- possibly two. That or "Rock on", but either way I think he's adding that to his vomitous seal of approval he left on the judge's desk.

I'm so happy for you guys! He's such a darling little man in that outfit.

Laurel said...

CONGRATULATIONS! Though I never doubted that Asher was, in fact, your all along, I didn't realize how rigorous all those questions would be for you guys. Such a neat experience! You are such a happy family!

Travis and Teresa Wilson said...

Congrats I am so excited for your family. I must say Asher has awesome lips and you guys are a beautiful family!

Dad said...

It was a very special day! Thank you for letting us be a part of it. We love our little Ash Man!

Celeste said...

That's awesome you guys. Great pics Nicole! Congratulations to the adorable family of 4!

disillusioned said...

Yea!!! Congratulations. I'm so happy for your family!!! What a doll--and I love the "throw up" statement too :)

Mary P.

diana said...

i've said this already, but once again... congratulations! i'm so so happy for you all.

i especially love that picture of you, ruby and asher, that you're lookin' at ruby. you look so pretty in it.