“When Terrence and I got married in 2017, we knew we immediately wanted to start our family. We had all the ‘right’ things going for us. We were young and happy, Terrence had a great job, I owned a business, and we had just bought a house. Now, it was time for the baby! We had been able to check off most of the boxes on the ultimate American Dream checklist, and this was the next task. We were so ready! We expected this to be… quick… and easy… Well, it was neither.
I started having some issues in March of 2018, and I started seeing a doctor. I didn’t love that doctor, we didn’t build a good rapport between us, so I went to a new doctor who I was told was the best of the best! I was actually excited. The first day I walked into that doctor’s office, I had no idea what kind of journey was about to begin. When I really want something, I will fight for it. I’m a ‘fight to the finish’ type of gal. At this point, I was agreeing to pretty much anything the doctor was recommending. I was in this for good. I wasn’t stopping until I had answers and a sweet baby in my arms.
This journey eventually led to a surgery. In October of 2018, I was rolled out of the operating room and told, ‘Mrs. Davis, you’re all fixed up! We are confident you will be pregnant in 4 months tops!’ The amount of joy and excitement I felt that day, even after surgery, was at an all-time high. I couldn’t believe it!
All the while, the Lord was telling me it was time. He laid it on my heart HEAVY. It was time for us to register for classes to become licensed foster parents. So, while I was on bed rest after my surgery, I signed up for PATH classes. And then, after, I sent an ever-so-casual text to Terrence that said something like: ‘Hey, babe, we start classes to become foster parents next month. See you when you get home. Love you!’ I was confused. I didn’t really know why the Lord was telling me NOW was the time. But, looking back, now I know why it’s His plan and not mine.
The process to become foster parents can be pretty long and daunting. Start to finish, the licensing process took us 6 months. In training, we learned all sorts of things from how to parent children with a history of trauma, all about the child welfare system, DCS policies, and so much more.
During the time frame we were in classes, we were also filling out heaps of paperwork and gathered documents to be turned in during the next step of the process. In addition, we both had to get physicals and extensive background checks.
After we completed all of our classes, we were contacted by a Home Study writer who made three separate visits to our home and analyzed each and every document we gathered and every piece of paperwork we filled out. She looked around our home to make sure it was safe and up to the standard that DCS requires. She had interviews with Terrence and I both together and individually. Our home study writer was so kind and walked us through each step of the process with kindness and care. She answered each one of our nervous questions with patience.. and there were a LOT of them. After our home study was completed, she sent it in to the state for approval. At that point, it took about 4 weeks to get our final approval.
All while going through the process to become foster parents, I was spending more time at the doctor’s office than I was anywhere else, still pursuing our infertility journey. I was taking medicines, being grouchy, arguing with my husband. Our hearts were breaking, we weren’t leaning into each other, we were actually doing the exact opposite. We couldn’t understand why I had this surgery and we still weren’t conceiving. My body still wasn’t working and doing what it was created to do.
Finally, in March of 2019, I brought it all to a halt. I said, ‘No more. Infertility is hurting my marriage. This isn’t for me. This isn’t healthy. This is NOT God’s will.’ In those moments, I knew, even through the heartbreak and disappointment of every negative pregnancy test, I was not meant to be pregnant at this time, and He was telling me that loud and clear. After lots of deep thought, prayer, and conversation with Terrence, we chose to stop with infertility treatment.
As we were coming off of the infertility rollercoaster, I took lots of time making sure every single little detail in the bedroom was perfect for our future foster loves. Everything matched, the beds were made perfectly, I had picked out a few special comfort toys to have on hand, and I had lots of donations from sweet friends stored away in the closet.
We had a pretty broad age range of children we were willing to take, so I was really excited thinking about all the possibilities. After we were officially approved on 4/30/19, Terrence and I were absolutely stoked to know at any moment we could get a placement, or two, or three.
Hours later after finding out we were approved, I received, at the time, devastating news that I was going to have to have knee surgery… the very next day. Oh, I’ve never been so upset. I just wanted to be able to take in all the kids, right away. At this point, I was thinking I would probably need to reach out to DCS and let them know I wouldn’t get to take children for another 6 weeks until I was fully recovered from my surgery. Terrence agreed.
After much thought and consideration, I did not let them know I would need an additional six weeks. I just figured we’d go with the flow and see what happened. I mean after all, it couldn’t be THAT bad. (hahahaha!)
Exactly seven days after my knee surgery, I was spending the day alone in bed recovering from knee surgery while Terrence worked. We had been approved to be foster parents for about a week, and we hadn’t had any calls.
When Terrence got home that evening, I really wasn’t feeling great, so we laid down around 7:30 p.m. and chose to skip dinner. Just as we were chatting about the day, we began to talk about the fact we hadn’t gotten any calls yet, and suddenly my phone rang with a number we didn’t know. I brushed it off, but Terrence insisted I answer because he just knew it was ‘the call.’
I’m so thankful Terrence pushed me to answer that call. Because, sure enough, it was the placement specialist calling to ask us if we would be able to take two toddlers who needed a long-term home. My heart immediately broke for these babies, but I was so thankful God chose us to be the ones to care for them during their time of need.
I immediately jumped up and directed Terrence to start straightening the house. I was still on crutches and unable to walk from the surgery. I plopped down on the couch and immediately started to pray. I needed strength to be the person they needed at this moment. I needed guidance to be the stability they so badly needed. I needed the wisdom to help calm their fears and anxieties as they came into a new home with strangers. And I needed to soften my heart for the birth mom we were about to go on a journey with.
Just a mere 30 minutes later, two of God’s greatest gifts showed up to our door with the sweetest CPS worker. The next 72 hours are still a complete blur to me. I’m thankful I have pictures and videos to help remind me of those special first moments. But those 72 hours changed me in ways I will never be able to explain. Those 72 hours taught me that your village of people is one of the most important parts of your foster care journey. Those 72 hours showed me my calling. I am forever indebted to ‘the call.’
Over the next few weeks, we would find out the birth mother was pregnant. We were told there was a possibility we would have the opportunity to care for the baby when he or she was born. So, from the beginning of our journey with this sibling group, we started to prepare for the possibility of adding a third baby to our home. Later, we found out it would be a baby girl.
For the next six months, we spent our extra time preparing, buying clothes, all the equipment, and even moving into a new house to accommodate our growing family. It was a constant emotional roller coaster as we experienced the many unknowns of foster care and not knowing if the baby was really going to come to us or not.
After Thanksgiving, to our surprise, we got a call that the baby had been born. And the biggest surprise of all was that it was a boy and not a girl! Despite our many efforts to prepare, we still had a lot of work to do. After a lot of ups and downs, and a month in the NICU, our baby boy was able to come home to us the day after Christmas.
I wish I could share more about where our case is today, sixteen months since they first came to us. But, to protect the privacy of all involved, I can’t give many details. I have confidence and faith we will be able to share more news about our journey very soon.
I didn’t know foster care would bring us our BIGGEST blessings. I didn’t know while we were working to help heal these babies’ hearts, they would be healing ours too. I didn’t know the second I laid eyes on them, something inside of me would instantly change, and I would never be the same again.
There’s so much more to our story, our infertility journey, and our foster care journey… and maybe one day, I will be able to write a book, about this massively blessed, crazy, messy, chaotic life we live. What I have learned is that broken hearts heal broken hearts. I knew that, if I just pulled it together and put all my faith in Him, my heart would be mended from all the heartbreak we had experienced. I didn’t know how, and I didn’t know when. I didn’t know it would be another broken heart that healed mine. I didn’t know that loss would bring our family, of now 5, together. I didn’t know my broken heart could help heal theirs. We have been blessed by foster care in more ways than one.
If you don’t think you could ever become a foster parent, because you would get ‘too attached,’ then chances are, you would be an amazing foster parent. Foster care takes a leap of faith. It requires bravery and courage and a willingness to have your heart broken into a million pieces. All children are worthy of love and attachment. That’s why we foster! You can’t be afraid to grieve, but afraid of what would happen if you didn’t take the risk to share your love. No matter how it turns out in the end, you’ll never regret the investment you’ve made into their life or the imprint they’ve made in your heart.
There’s always room at the table.”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Alexandra Davis. You can follow their journey as it develops on Instagram, Facebook, and their website. Do you have a similar experience? We’d like to hear your important journey. Submit your own story here. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.
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