“I have three kids, but I have only had one positive pregnancy test. My family was built by foster care, adoption and pregnancy. All of my children are miraculous in their own way and nightly we say, ‘Isn’t it a miracle that in this big, big world, we all found one another and became a family?’
Justin and I married in 2003 and began trying to start a family a few years later. We are both Type-A personalities and just knew it would happen quickly. After a year and a half of casually trying on our own, we decided to reach out to our doctor. The tests results were not great, but no one could pin-point an exact reason to why we couldn’t get pregnant. We continued to seek medical advice and keep trying on our own.
In 2010, we talked to a doctor who told us our chances of conceiving naturally were less than 5%. The doctor presented us a handful of options we could take. We talked and prayed about this news and felt that God closed the door on a natural pregnancy. We felt a clear sign that he was calling us to adoption. We took one entire year that we called ‘Justin and Tiffany’s Year of Fun.’ We traveled and ate and drank and enjoyed one another more than we had in years. We came back from a trip to Mexico in 2011 and enrolled in foster care certification classes. That fall and spring saw us become certified foster parents.
We received our first call about a foster placement in May 2012 and would go on to host three temporary placements over the next year. Our oldest son Peyton was originally placed with us in July 2012. I will never forget the call from the case worker. ‘Mrs. King, we have a baby who needs a home. It could be for a short time or it could be permanent. We don’t know. Would you take the placement?’ We said yes with no expectations of how long he would be with us.
To weigh all our options, we decided to sit down with an attorney friend and talk about what a private adoption would look like. We loved our time in foster, but it only made us long for a permanent situation more. We sought to feel in control of an uncontrollable situation. In the interim, we continued with the foster program. In July 2013, we received a call from an attorney in New Orleans who knew we had an interest in private adoption. They had a baby who needed a home. This baby became our second son, Paxton.
One month after Paxton was born, Peyton had his one-year hearing with the state. The judge made the decision to send him home to be reunited with his family. We were sad to lose the child we had raised for 13 months, but we knew our position in the system. We prayed for him, anointed his head with oil, and placed him in the arms of his case worker. We thought this was the last time we would see him. Sadly, 60 days later, Peyton came back into the foster system and was placed with our family again.
October 1 and 29, 2014, were the dates set for the finalization of the adoptions of our boys. Pax on the first and Peyton on the 29th. We were whole, fulfilled, loved. We were legally their parents.
Justin and I both felt our family was complete. We were beyond grateful to have two boys. We were so happy to just love our boys and care for them, and we settled into raising our sons. In the spring of 2015, Justin and I came back from a trip, and I came down with a stomach virus. I couldn’t shake it for several days and just wanted to sleep all the time. I spoke with a friend and told her how I was feeling. She quickly asked if I had taken a pregnancy test. I was laughing to her since she knew our infertility journey.
She showed up to the house 20 minutes later with a pregnancy test in hand, and told me I needed to take it right then. I didn’t even have to wait the full three minutes before the test popped up pregnant. I immediately called Justin, ‘I think I may be pregnant!’ He asked, ‘Why on earth would you think that?’ I laughed and said, ‘I have a positive pregnancy test in my hand.’ He asked, ‘Well, how accurate are they?’ I thought, ‘I have no clue! I have never gotten a positive before.’
Several phone calls later to my friend, Tisha Segers, who is an APRN-CNM (midwife), we discovered that the tests are extremely accurate and we were, in fact, pregnant. She scheduled me for an ultrasound immediately.
This is a part of things that people don’t fully understand. Wouldn’t you be so excited you were pregnant? Well yes, but I was also racked with fear. What if something was wrong? What if it wasn’t a healthy pregnancy? We had gone all of those years not having a miscarriage and I didn’t want to have to go through that after all this time. I was worried but I was so excited to hear the heartbeat at our first visit. Some of the fear left, but I still worried. Infertility trauma doesn’t just leave you the moment you get pregnant. Like any other trauma it takes time to work through your emotions.
We cherished our pregnancy just like we did each of our foster children and each of our adoptions. Every child that has stepped foot into our house is a miracle and we have treasured them all equally. We still keep a list of our foster children’s names on a pad in our nightstand and pray for them often.
In December 2015, our precious Porter was born in New Orleans at Touro hospital in the most amazing natural and healing birth. He was delivered by one of my best friends Tisha, who I mentioned above.
To me the most wonderful thing about the entire experience is how Porter healed all of us and drew us all closer together. The boys came to the hospital to meet him and I remember Peyton looking up at us and saying, ‘Mom, he’s our baby, he’s all of our baby!’ Something about his birth just melded us all together even more.
We say he is the caboose of our family, but that is still up in the air. There are days I don’t know how I will survive the three of them, and there are days I would have or adopt 20 more. We have taken a step back from the foster system in the interim but our heart is to get back in when the boys move past the toddler years.
I don’t look back on our journey and wish it to be any different than it was. I believe our infertility drew us closer together as a couple and truly made us cherish our kids. We definitely have our ups and downs as nothing is perfect. Infertility has taught us so much about waiting and fighting and overcoming, but more than anything, it taught me we are stronger than I ever knew we could be.
If you or someone you know is experiencing infertility, know you are not alone, and it is not your fault. You are wonderful and sometimes we just can’t explain things that happen in life. The one thing I know is you can get through this, and when you look back, you will know how strong you were.”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Tiffany King. You can follow her journey on Instagram and her blog, We Five Kings. Do you have a similar experience? We’d like to hear your important journey. Submit your own story here, and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories.
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