Sunday, July 9, 2017

94 Years Remembered in 94 Days-Post 2 (Adopting Judy)

This is a wonderful story about my Aunt Teresa that made a difference not only in her life, but in mine.    

Teresa and I were talking  a few years ago about when Judy was born and when she came home to 858 in Douglas. I remember being so excited. I was in kindergarten and I can remember wanting to rush home from the morning session to see her. I remember sitting in the little red rocker so that I could hold her.

Teresa adopted Judy as a single parent in 1955, which was almost unheard of at that time. Judy's birth family went to St. Luke's Church, the parish we belonged to. Her birth father was in the Army stationed at Fort Huachuca, but they lived in Douglas. Father McGovern, who was the pastor at St. Luke's, was instrumental in Teresa getting Judy. Her birth mother was very sick and died a few weeks after Judy was born 6 weeks premature. Her birth father decided that he wanted Teresa to have Judy.

My mother and I were home the day that Teresa found out she was going to get Judy. Teresa and my grandmother were in Phoenix at a retreat. My mother went to Bisbee and spoke with the judge. He said that there would be no problem with the adoption since it was a "direct relinquishment" from the birth father.

Since Judy was born prematurely, she didn't come home until March 8. Teresa told me that night that when she got her in the car she thought "what I have done--can I do this?" She then said she went to St. Luke's and took Judy into the church. She prayed for a few minutes and everything was fine. Teresa has such a great faith.

My mom and Father McGovern were Judy's godparents. Father had to get special permission from the bishop to be able to be the godfather. When Father was dying several years ago, Judy and I went to visit him. I know that he had a special place in his heart for Judy. She was so wonderful with him that afternoon. It truly touched me.

Judy has always been my "sister." I am blessed to have her in my life. She has always been such a support. I am not sure what I would do without her!!!

So, Judy, I am glad you were born. I am glad that Teresa was your mother. We had a wonderful childhood with my mom, Teresa, and our incredible Uncle Johnny! They taught us the importance of family. A family can have so many different configurations. Ours was a bit different for the 50's, but it couldn't have been any more loving. Thanks for all you  and Teresa have done for all of us over the years. I know that Kerri, Patrick, and Cameron love both of you dearly. 

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