This afternoon, we had one final meeting with C’s adoption worker and our home development worker. On the way there, I realized that this was the first time they had seen me in real clothes & make-up & fixed hair since we began this journey a little over 2 years ago. I’m not just being dramatic. They both confirmed it today. And I started thinking back over our journey so far.

I remember how nervous I was in the beginning. I cleaned for hours before every home study visit. I made sure I showered & put on real clothes for every class & every visit & every time I thought I might even bump into them when I went out. Because I was afraid they wouldn’t approve of me. And I needed their approval. Or they wouldn’t let kids come stay with us.

And then they met the real Terah. The one who wears workout clothes or pajamas almost everyday of the week. The one who might wash her hair twice a week. The one who wears makeup on Sunday mornings & special occasions only. The one who had crazy eyes and crazy bed head most days they came for visits. The one who had a sink full of dishes every.single.time they came for a home visit. The one who had mounds of laundry piled everywhere when they stopped by for visits.

And y’all. They allowed Caleb to stay with us anyway. They continued to call us to take care of other children anyway. They certified us and renewed our certification anyway. Tomorrow we get to adopt Caleb anyway. Because they aren’t looking for perfect, put together people. And I am so thankful. Because I am never perfect and rarely, if ever, put together. We have come so far since those first classes and home studies and nervousness.

Tomorrow, we will stand before a judge and legally be declared Caleb’s parents. I cannot adequately describe the love I have for this little man. From the moment I saw him, I knew he would be my son forever. Some days, I thought tomorrow would never come. Just short of 18 months after he first came to us, he is finally being declared our legal son. Tonight is the last night he will go to sleep as a child of the system. Tonight is the last night he goes to sleep a legal orphan. Tomorrow is coming. Tomorrow brings hope & joy. Tomorrow & everyday after, he will go to sleep with a new name.

Caleb Scott Sampler. You were ours from the moment we saw you. You will be ours forever tomorrow.