Words can’t quite describe the weight off of us! We thought we weren’t going to be able to finalize as of the night before, and we were filling out paperwork still at the court house that morning, but it’s DONE. The actual hearing was pretty quick. Our parents, siblings, and nieces/nephews sat in the row behind us, so that was really neat. Jax was 100% obnoxious…shouting out “correct!” when the judge would ask us questions, spinning around in his chair, facing backwards, shouting “peek-a-boo” to his cousins, etc. etc. ETC. The judge did a nice job of including the kids (“Is this what you want?” “Are these the names you want?” “Are you happy?” “You need to understand that these are now your Mom and Dad forever”). Charlie and I wrote vows, and read them in court, and it was very emotional.
I, Mom, take you, Jacob and Alyssa to be my kids. I promise to keep you safe to the very best of my ability. I promise to be your Mom during the very best of times and at the very worst. I swear that nothing you can do will change that. I promise to always make sure you have everything you need, and I promise not to let you have everything you want. I promise to always help you see the good in others and in yourself. I promise to always be honest with you, even when it hurts. I promise I will help you find your birth family if you tell me that’s what you want someday. I promise I will still be your Mom if/when you choose to do that, like it or not. I promise I will never leave you, and that we will be a family forever.
Alyssa and Jacob,
I am your dad.
I will always be your dad.
I promise to keep you safe
I promise to play often and laugh even more with you
I promise to help you grow physically, mentally, emotionally
You can ask me life’s questions and I will answer them to the best of my knowledge
I will do all that I can so we are happy and healthy.
We will laugh. We will cry. We will sing!
We will experience different and exciting things together
We will make so many memories as a forever family.
Through thick and thin, through happy times and sad times, through your early years to teenage years and beyond, I promise to be a constant of love, guidance, and fun.
I will never stop loving you . . . ever.
I am your dad.
We were expecting mixed emotions after court/that weekend, but all we got was sheer relief. Alyssa must have said 10 times that first day, “I’m just so glad this is forever.” That night, when we tucked her into bed, she said – “Good night officially Mom and Dad!” I am headed to school first thing in the morning to show them the court order that declares their new names, Alyssa Brooklyn Joy Kent and Jacob Jett Kent!
We had the most fabulous weekend ever celebrating…Bounce Adventure, water park all to ourselves, fantastic hotel room with a kids suite, amazing cabin in Crosslake, paddle boarding, lots of swimming, bonfire, etc. A perfect ending to a less-than-perfect process!