Carrick’s adoption at Bakersfield’s Juvenile Justice Center was a shoot I’ll never forget. The Hepp family have been going to my church, Crossway Baptist, and I knew Carrick when we all called him “baby” in the church nursery. This was before they had the adoption set and name picked out, of course. Although he didn’t have a set name, “baby” was very loved. He was always my favorite in the nursery, but let’s keep that between you and me.
Carrick’s adoption was far from normal. With Covid restrictions lifted, I was looking forward to being in the courtroom as the Hepp’s welcomed their son into their family officially. Of course, upon my arrival, the building was being evacuated for a fire! When we walked outside, we saw smoke coming out of a small portion of the building. The fire department was quick to extinguish the fire, but unfortunately, the smoke had already filled the building. Because of this, no one was allowed inside. The judge gave all the adoption families the option to postpone their adoption date or do their adoption outside–not a single family chose to postpone! What a sweet moment it was to walk with the dozens of family members to the grass for their adoptions.
With shade from one tree, family members close, the adoption was still able to happen! Tears definitely were falling in pure joy. Carrick is so dearly loved. To be honest, one of my favorite moments was the judges eyes and smile after Carrick was officially deemed a Hepp. She lit up. You can tell that everyone involved from the City was so excited to see Carrick become a member of his forever family. I appreciate these workers so much. Our city needs them!
To the Hepps, thank you for allowing me to be a part of your special moment. It was a joy and honor to see your smiles as you signed the documents to make Carrick an official member of your family! This truly is your Heppily Ever After.