BELTON, Texas (FOX 44/KWKT) — For many of the families adopting children in Bell County on Friday, the only real change is a piece of paper.
November is National Adoption Month, and Nov. 17 marked the 15th annual Adoption Day that some Bell County families have celebrated.
“Each of these families has been on a long journey. Sometimes months, sometimes years, but this day symbolized the end of that journey for them. They are finally, officially, legally, parents. So they are now family units,” says Texas Department of Family and Protective Services Region 7 Media Specialist Mark Wilson.
Eleven families in attendance finalized their adoptions with the county. Wilson also says every person in court showed up for each other time after time.
“I’ve known her [Jaelee Johnson] since she was a baby. From being in the delivery room to being here now, it’s nothing but a blessing,” says adoptive mother Tivonda Tucker-Johnson.
As for the Yellow Brick Road and a singing Dorothy (from The Wizard of Oz) present at Friday’s ceremony, Wilson had this to say:
“The Wizard of Oz is about a journey. It’s about a journey with a lot of twists and turns. But over that rainbow, you know, there’s a great place where Dorothy found herself, and now the children have found their forever homes,” says Wilson.
The Tucker-Johnson family now leaves the courtroom even more complete than when they arrived.
“I can’t even put it into words because we have always loved her. And so, this just makes our hearts even fuller,” says Tucker-Johnson.