This 2-year-old boy was adopted over Zoom after coronavirus pandemic canceled court hearings


(CNN) Kimberly Wieneke says she knew she loved 2-year-old Jaden the minute he came into her family’s life.

Kimberly Wieneke and her husband have been foster parents for over a year and Jaden has been with them since last May, according to CNN affiliate KNWA.

“In my heart, I already knew I wanted him,” Wieneke, who lives in Fort Smith, Arkansas, said.

They found out Jaden was going to be put up for adoption in February.

“We knew the day they terminated [the parental rights] that we would be adopting April 16,” Wieneke said.

They knew that day would be a special one and started making plans. But the Coronavirus pandemic meant those plans had to change. The pandemic altered daily life in the US — and around the world — including how court hearings are conducted.

Many are now done online, and Wieneke realized Jaden’s adoption would be no different.

“We see all the pictures after the adoption day — they’re standing there with the judge, everyone is smiling,” Wieneke said. “We didn’t get that.”

Instead, Jaden’s adoption hearing took place via a Zoom video call. But Wieneke said the adoption was no less special.

“Sometimes it feels like not real, I mean we sit and look at him and we’re like, ‘He’s ours.'” Wieneke told KNWA. “But it’s like, we didn’t get that experience.”

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