First a disclaimer - yes, we all know that the best situation would be for Lil J's mom (and any foster child) to be able to parent their own children, that they would not be in a situation that required the state removing their child. Or, after removal - the mom would prove herself fit and be reunified with her child. yada yada yada.
BUT - when that does not happen, then of course what is best for the child is adoption
End of disclaimer
We had court last week- and the judge scheduled a termination trial date for NEXT MONTH! There are a few teeny stipulations that might delay the trial by about a month - but, I don't think there will be a delay and the trial should start as planned.
It is a multi-day trial and each day can be a week apart. So, it is not like the termination of rights will happen on the first day. I also found out that I am not allowed to attend the termination trial. I have attended every trial since Lil J moved into our home. But, the termination trial deals with TONS of "confidential" information that technically I am not entitled to. Most of the info I DO have is kinda on the side - I am sure I am not supposed to know most of what I do. As much as I would love to hear all the details of the case - it is hard to get sitters or have my husband take off of work. And, since it is a multi-day trial, it would be a lot of time off.
There will be mediation a few days before the trial - where bio mom would have the opportunity to do a voluntary surrender. This is something that we are invited to. They do this so they could possibly cancel the trial and save the state some $$. But, if mom does not show up to mediation (VERY possible) then we go to trial. Bio-dad will also be invited to this mediation. In fact, the state is flying him up from down south so that he can attend the mediation.
At this point - there is no way the judge should not terminate her rights. She has done nothing on her court ordered plan, has not seen Lil J in over 4 months, and has gotten herself in "trouble" since he has been in care. Today is actually 2 years in care. Time is up.
We are pretty excited that it is next month. And, even if it gets delayed, it will only be delayed by about a month. After termination - it will still be several months before his adoption is final.
So - disclaimer aside - we are EXCITED
And - an update on Bio-Dad
They finally found the bio father - he kinda "fell off the earth" for 1.5 years. He has said time and time again that he WILL surrender, that he is in no place to raise a child. We sent pictures and pages of his lifebook to him through the caseworker, and he was overcome with emotion. He was so happy to see that we actually do stuff with him - you know ---- treat him like he is part of our family.
BUT - he said he will not surrender unless he is certain that Lil J will not go back to his mom. He is scheduled to attend mediation, which is a few days before the TPR trial. They are going to fly him up from FL to attend mediation - he will be able to hear all the details of the case. It would not take a genius to figure out the they will terminate. So, he will either surrender at mediation, or right after the termination trial.
Just a tiny glitch - but I don't think it will be too much of an issue. He has the same issues as the mother, so it is not like he CAN parent.