The morning Shawn died, Brittany and Carter had an unexpected conversation demanded by crisis and driven by the unknowns. Carter’s mom — Shawn’s first wife — had descended into drug addiction and had excluded herself from the “fit to parent” list years before. After the divorce, Shawn got Carter and bio mom went on her merry way. It was just the two of them for a while until Shawn met Brittany. Carter liked Britt enough to tell his dad to pop the question, which he did. She said yes, they got married, and happy family times ensued. All was well…
…until the day Shawn died. In the chaos of the morning, an unexpected conversation ensued. Carter asked Britt: “now that my Dad is gone, will I have to go back to my mom?” Without a second thought or dry eyes, Britt said you’re not going anywhere.” She filed the emergency guardianship paperwork that same afternoon, keeping Carter in loving, safe, and capable hands. By God’s grace, time passed and healing ensued, though the unknowns still lurked in the background. I also was lurking in the background, so to speak and in a non-creepy way, moving into the position of husband to Britt and step-dad to Carter, who had lost his irreplaceable father to an unforeseen cardiac event. Yet another reminder that life is precious. Every day is a gift.
After years of paperwork, trying to track down bio-mom, public filings, court proceedings, attorney meetings, attorney fees and more paperwork, we finally have things lined up to adopt Carter. I say “we” because Carter asked for both Britt and I to adopt him. What an honor.
On Monday we go before the judge for Carter’s termination hearing. Before he can be adopted, the parental rights of his biological mom have to be terminated. You’d think this will be as simple as flipping a pancake on a hot griddle, but it may get complicated, like when the pancake sticks to the pan and gets all wrinkled up. The wrinkle here will be if bio mom decides to show up and raise a stink. We sure would appreciate your prayer for that to not happen. Prayer is like the nonstick coating that ensures a smooth flip of the flapjack, so to speak.
Provided everything goes smoothly in Monday’s hearing, we will go back to court again around early April and finalize Carter’s adoption.
One of the first conversations Brittany and I had in the year that followed Shawn’s passing was about her intense drive to adopt Carter. It hasn’t cooled. She’s on this thing. And now… finally… we get to see this next piece in God’s redemption fall into place. We all wish we’d been spared from our various disasters and losses, no doubt, but as far as making good out of a bad situation, God is doing a glorious job. We have our challenges but Christ is at the center, the love of God is like a dome over us, and the Spirit breathes life into our every moment.
Thanks for reading this short update. Keep our family in your prayers. We appreciate your support and glorify the Lord in all of it.