Forever families are often a long-time coming. Just ask Noel, who's been on Wednesday's Child twice before -- and today, her 3rd and final time, as the daughter of a couple who fought hard for her.
Wednesday's Child in October of 2003 -- we met a delightful 8-year-old on skates. Her name was Marissa then and her new mom hadn't even seen her yet.
"Um there were two failed adoptions. She's been in foster care. She was in foster care for over eight years with more than 10 placements -- some of them good, some of them not good. Child Haven three times. She has a lot of really hard memories about life before foster care as well," says D.J., her new adoptive mom.
D.J. and Russ are the forever parents who finalized Marissa's adoption with their daughter last December -- only she's no longer Marissa.
"One of the first things they told us about her is that she was interested in changing her name. I didn't care if we called her Fred, as long as we called her mine. That was fine. So she picked her own name," jokes D.J.
She picked the name Noel. Noel is quite the musician, not only the flute, but piano, too. The second time she was on Wednesday's Child was at the Artful Potter in August of '06
"On your show, you were there interviewing her, she was painting a unicorn at the Artful Potter and you were talking to her and for some reason, I just stopped what I was doing. And I've never done that and just watched, and there was something really neat about her," says D.J.
One thing led to another, and it wasn't long before D.J. and Russ had cleared the adoption process. "I had no clue what we were in for, you know, training," admits Russ.
Then they were ready to meet Noel for the first time.
"And then Saturday, we picked her up at 11 and spent the day with he. And it was magical. It was amazing to sit there and watch her, and to listen to her talk and you could tell that she was really nervous, and she was trying to hard to make a good impression and everything, and i thought, "My gosh, how many people in the world feel like they have to audition for a family?" You know, what must that feel like?" says D.J.
But Noel can tell you what it feels like, "They're nice, they're great, they're mine and I'm theirs."
D.J. and Russ already have 5 grown children but couldn't resist when they heard Noel say she wanted an LDS family.
There are many more children waiting for adoption. To get started with the process, call the Adoption Exchange today at 4365-6335.