Speed Reads

It wasn't all bad

California nurse adopts girl she took care of as a baby

Mary Ann Wells and Sophia formed a bond eight years ago, and on the eve of her official adoption, it's stronger than ever.

Wells met Sophia when she was just two-and-a-half weeks old, a tiny patient at Loma Linda Children's Hospital in Loma Linda, California. Sophia was born with a condition called gastroschisis, with her intestines outside of her abdomen. She needed to have surgery, and was in the hospital for 11 months, spending much of her time in isolation. "I would sing to her, hold her, cuddle her," Wells told ABC Los Angeles. Sophia's dad was never in her life and her mother was often not around, leading the hospital staff to determine "there was excessive medical noncompliance," Wells said.

Wells and her husband, Steve, jumped at the chance to become Sophia's legal guardians, and three years ago, the now-retired couple started the adoption process. On Saturday, it will become official, and Sophia said she is "super-duper, ultra-mega" excited. She's also picked out a new middle name to go with her adoption: Genesis, because "it's going to be like a new beginning," she said.