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March 8, one of the best days of my life

| March 6, 2024 10:15 AM

March 8, 2017.

I sat just outside the courtroom with my sister and brothers. 

Our Sunday School teacher sat with us. She entertained us with games and stories as the court dragged on. I glanced hopefully towards the shut doors, waiting.

Waiting.

Finally, the courtroom doors swung open and out came my mom and step-dad. The smiles on their faces could not be contained. My siblings and I jumped up, grins splitting across our lips and we raced to hug them. It had really happened.

My step-dad — now my legal dad — gripped me tightly and whispered in my ear, “Remember Evy, I chose you.”

I dug my face deeper into his shoulder to hide my tears.

This Friday will mark five years since my last name changed and my step-dad adopted me. Five years since I officially became a Vigil.

I can not remember much, if anything, of my biological father. A part of me is grateful to have so few memories of him. After all, DNA does not make family, and loving someone goes deeper than blood.

Love is a choice. It is purposeful. This is something I did not fully realize until my dad adopted me. When he hugged me after that day in the courtroom something about my perception changed. Dad’s example of true love shown to me and my family has dramatically shaped the way I see the world, and even relationships as a whole. 

I praise God that He was gracious enough to bless me with my dad, who is everything a father should be: strong, funny, hardworking and selfless. He is our protector and provider, and has become the role model for my life.

The day I was adopted was one of the best days of my life, because of his decision, my whole life has changed. 

Now, I know that no matter what life throws my way, I have someone who is always on my side — my dad. And I could not be more proud to have his name.


Intern Evelyn Vigil is a senior at Bigfork High School.