Gosh, this has been a whirlwind of a journey for us! I cannot believe that we have only been involved for nearly 6 months in this case since we got the call that has/will forever change our life.
Taking on the 3 boys ages 2,5,7 at the time, meant that everything we thought we knew about raising children, kind of went out the door. We didn’t know how to raise boys (we have only had girls), and we truly didn’t understand the severity of all of the trauma that they had experienced during their lifetime. It has been difficult at times (a lot of times), but it also has been the most rewarding experience to see that these boys feel safe, loved, and secured and have actually said on multiple occasions that they want to live with us for the rest of their life.
All of the visits that we took them to with their biological parents, just tore them apart. Especially when the parents showed up testing positive for drugs and they still allowed the visits to happen (so crazy)! The damage that was done after every visit was heartbreaking and we spent the next two weeks trying to pick up all of the pieces, before they were then shattered again a the next visit.
Then comes the waiting game of when the actual trial would happen.. this trial had been reset 4 previous times(in almost 6 months), and on April 28, the TRIAL actually happened!
Six hours, Six witnesses called to the stand, countless arguments from both of the parents lawyers, CPS providing every single possible detail about the parents history and lack of involvement during this entire process, and the Judge finally determining the verdict.
Verdict stands: Termination of rights (for all three of the children and of their 18 month old younger sister who is placed in another home) for both of the biological parents.
What does that exactly mean? That means that they will be given a goodbye visit (one last visit with their kids), and then they are no longer in their life anymore. It means that they did not do what was provided to them and expected of them during the last 508 days while the children have been removed and in CPS care. It means that they do have a time during which they can appeal (which can last up to 90 days). It means that we can FINALLY talk about adoption (after the goodbye visit), and moving forward during this process. It means that these boys can be given the chance at having a successful life.
This day has come and gone, and I am SO very happy to be sitting here typing this. Staying up much later than I would have intended on doing (because I have to go to work bright and early in the morning), but I wanted to let you all know here, that this is what we have been praying for, and I thank you ALL for the many prayers during this process as well. Please continue to send them as we will be facing the fact that the parents may appeal to the verdict, and that may delay the adoption process from starting.
I can’t wait to see what happens in the next few months bring! Until next time.
©2017 Sheridan Johnson @Journey with the Johnsons. All Rights Reserved.