Like many hopeful parents, Sarah and Andy Justice tried to conceive for years but never had any success. Eventually, they decided to turn to their "Plan C" and give adoption a try. The process was quite an ordeal, but when they were finally chosen as parents, their lives changed in the most unimaginable ways. Read on to learn their remarkable story.
Sarah And Andy Justice Were Happily Married
Sarah and Andy Justice of Tulsa, Oklahoma, were living the idyllic married life. After three years of marriage, they felt it was time to share their love with another human being by growing their family.
Like a lot of couples who've been married for a few years, having a child was the next step for the Justices. They were ready to bring a new life into the world. Unfortunately for the Justices, fate had a different plan.
After Three Years, They Felt That Something Was Missing
The Justices were happily married for three years when they realized something was missing. The logical next step for them was to have a baby, but this wouldn't prove easy for Sarah.
Sarah Justice was one of many mothers who had difficulty conceiving. The Justices tried for three grueling years to get pregnant with no success. So many years of trying only to come up short would start to take its toll on Sarah and Andy. Their marriage became strained over Sarah's inability to get pregnant, so they began to look into other options.
They Decided To Travel To A Fertility Doctor
Sarah and Andy decided to seek a fertility doctor to help them find ways to conceive. It was really none of their faults that they couldn't get pregnant, but seeking help was the best option, especially to keep their sanity for their marriage.
The only problem for them now was the fact that there were no reputable fertility specialists in Tulsa, which required them to look elsewhere. The closest fertility doctor they could find was all the way in St. Louis, Missouri. It was a huge inconvenience, but distance was a small price to pay for the potential to have one of God's greatest gifts.
They Traveled Six Hours To Receive Some Bad News
In 2014, the Justices traveled from their humble home in Tulsa all the way to the big city of St. Louis. The six-hour interstate drive was long, but the Justices did whatever they had to do to get the fertility treatments that Sarah needed.
Once they arrived in St. Louis, Sarah underwent the fertility treatment prescribed by the doctor they found there. Unfortunately, they got more bad news. The first treatment didn't take and the Justices were devastated. Determined to have a baby, however, they knew that they couldn't give up. Still, they looked to more options.
Sarah And Andy Considered In-Vitro Fertilization
Sarah and Andy asked their fertility doctor about the in-vitro fertilization process as one option to conceive. They were told that even though they were both great candidates for in-vitro fertilization, there was still only a 10% chance that they would successfully conceive.
On top of the mere 10% chance they'd get pregnant, Sarah would have to undergo a grueling procedure. In-vitro fertilization is an incredibly invasive process. Sarah would've had to have months of hormone treatments before having her eggs harvested right out of her ovaries. After the entire process, the possibility that the embryo wouldn't implant loomed over their heads.
In-Vitro Proved To Be Too Much Of A Risk
Another caveat to the in-vitro fertilization process was its incredible cost. This innovative conception procedure is not cheap at all. A basic IVF cycle can cost someone anywhere from $12,000 to $15,000. For some people, it's definitely a huge risk, especially if there was a large chance it wouldn't work.
On top of that, the IVF process isn't usually covered by health insurance. In the Justices' case, they were looking at a cost in the tens of thousands of dollars if they wanted to conceive through IVF. The high cost, combined with the slim chances gave the Justices second thoughts. But there was still another option.
The Justices Turned To Adoption
Sarah and Andy next began to consider adoption. After years of not being able to conceive and being told that medical treatments would have a low success rate, the Justices were desperate to become parents at this point.
So, Sarah and Andy moved forward with the adoption process. For those who've been in this boat, it comes as no surprise that the adoption process is grueling in itself. Long before you're allowed to bring a child home, prospective parents have to go through a lengthy application process that includes vetting their personal lives and their living situations.
The Adoption Process Would Not Be Easy For Them
Anyone who's been through the adoption process knows that it could take years, especially if you're looking to adopt a newborn. But Andy and Sarah Justice were still determined to become parents and would stop at nothing to achieve that.
After starting the adoption process, however, Andy and Sarah were met with another set of hurdles in order to take a baby home. All they wanted was to add a bundle of joy to their loving family, but it seemed that they were having to go through a lot in order to do just that.
The Long Process Of Adoption
After their adoption application was submitted and accepted, the Justices had to have their home evaluated. The adoption agency has to ensure that you have a home fit to raise a child in. But the biggest part of the process is perhaps the interview.
This might be a cause of extreme anxiety for some, but for the Justices it was essential to keep their cool in order to remain clear-headed throughout the ordeal. The adoption agency organized interviews for the Justices with prospective birth mothers who decided to give up their child to a loving home.
They Were Chosen, But Things Took A Turn For The Worse
The Justices ostensibly went through an extensive interview process, but eventually they were finally met with some great news. One of the mothers that they had met had chosen the Justices to raise her child.
Sarah and Andy were ecstatic for sure. Finally, it seemed that their prayers have been answered and they were one step closer to raising a family. The Justices supported the birth mother through every step of her pregnancy as they prepared for their new addition. But just as its arrival drew near, things would take a turn for the worst.
Three Steps Forward, Four Steps Back
After their birth mother backed out at the last minute, Sarah and Andy Justice decided that they had to keep trying. They recontacted the adoption agency and let them know that they still very much wanted to become parents.
After another round of interviews, Sarah and Andy were chosen by a new birth mother. Unfortunately, the same thing would happen again. The second potential birth mom decided to keep her baby at the last minute as well. Just when it seemed like things took three-steps forwards, Sarah and Andy were set four-steps back.
Sarah And Andy Knew They Couldn't Give Up
Though Sarah and Andy stayed with their birth mother every step of the way, something happened that would come as a crushing blow to the parents-to-be. At the very last minute of her pregnancy, the birth mother changed her mind and decided to keep her baby.
The Justices, of course, had to respect this decision. But it didn't mean that they weren't absolutely devastated, especially since they have waited so long and already had gone through so much. The Justices have shown resilience up until this point, so giving up was not an option. They decided to move on.
Eventually, They Received A Call That Would Change Their Lives Forever
At this point, Sarah and Andy Justice were understandably disappointed. Some might even argue that they were a little discouraged. But determined as they were to become parents, the Justices kept praying for good news.
Eventually, their prayers would make it through because good news was right around the corner. Going through everything that they had over the last several years, it would have all been in vain if they had decided to end their journey right then and there. But after the second birth mom had backed out, the Justices received a call that would change their lives forever.
A Third Birth Mom Picked Them And She Had A Surprise
The Justices were at their lowest point after the second birth mom backed out. But suddenly, Sarah Justice received a call from the adoption agency that would give her hope.
It seemed that their prayers had been answered when the adoption agency told them there was a third birth mother who'd chosen the Justices to adopt her baby. It was amazing news for sure, but this wouldn't be the end of the road for the Justices. In fact, things were going to get a little more interesting because little did everyone know, this third birth mom had something up her sleeve.
The Ultrasound Appointment Came With A Huge Shock
Sarah and Andy Justice were thrilled upon hearing the news they were chosen by a third birth mom. They were so thrilled, in fact, that they were there for her every step of the way. The birth mother even invited them to an ultrasound appointment.
At the ultrasound appointment, Sarah and Andy would have a chance to see their new child for the first time. However, something strange showed up on the scan that displayed on the ultrasound monitor. Everything looked normal for the birth mom, but to her surprise and everyone else's, she was actually carrying three babies instead of one!
No One Expected To Have Three Babies
Sarah, Andy, and their birth mother were completely shocked to see three heartbeats on the ultrasound monitor. They have worked so hard for so long just to be blessed with one bundle of joy, but now the universe was giving them three.
At this point, the Justices knew that this is what was in store for them all along. They weren't expecting to have to adopt three kids, but upon this discovery, they knew that these triplets were meant for them. Excited for what the future had in store, the Justices expedited the adoption process and began preparing for their new additions.
Sarah And Andy Were Unprepared But Ready For The Challenge
The Justices were not prepared to have so many babies at once. They had spent so much time trying to get one, that that's pretty much all they were prepared for. But Sarah and Andy were not ones to give up and instead were up for the challenge.
After all, they knew they would want to raise more than one kid down the road. They just didn't expect to be raising more than one at the same time. But instead of having to go through the adoption process multiple times, this one adoption would enable them to have the family they wanted.
They Immediately Had To Start Baby Proofing
To prepare for their three bundles of joy, the Justices got to work immediately. They had to baby proof their house and had to buy three of everything – including cribs and strollers. Getting all the necessities ready for the triplets was expensive, but certainly not as much as IVF would have been.
If anything, Sarah and Andy were ready to shell out anything to prepare for the triplets' arrival. After all, their dream of becoming parents and raising a family had been a long time coming at that point. They couldn't have been more excited!
The Triplets Were Born Premature
In May 2013, their birth mother's water broke and she went into labor eight weeks early. Sarah and Andy went to the hospital and anxiously waited to meet their new babies. After hours of what was probably a grueling labor, the birth mother delivered three tiny babies.
Each baby was a mere three pounds. Their names were Hannah, Joel, and Elizabeth. As much as the Justices were excited to meet their newborn triplets, they still had yet another obstacle to overcome before they could take Hannah, Joel, and Elizabeth home. This time, it wasn't because of the birth mother either.
The Justices Had To Wait Before Taking Them Home
Because Hannah, Joel, and Elizabeth were born eight weeks early, they were considered premature. This was alarming for new parents Sarah and Andy, but they had to remain positive. After all, they were happy to finally have their prayers answered.
The premature triplets had to stay in the neonatal intensive care unit for a while before they were healthy enough to go home with the Justices. At the hospital, the triplets went through rapid development, growing bigger and stronger with each day. The Justices watched patiently from afar before they could finally start raising their family.
While They Waited, Something Happened To Sarah
One week after the triplets' birth, Sarah began to feel sick. The lengthy adoption process and preparing for the arrival of triplets took its toll on the Justices, so it wasn't out of the ordinary that Sarah thought she should visit the doctor.
After all, she wanted to make sure she was healthy by the time the babies came home to ensure that she would be well enough to take care of three newborns. Sarah went through an extensive evaluation with her doctor to find out if she was well. When her doctor came back with the results, Sarah could hardly believe it!
Sarah Finally Got Pregnant After Adopting Triplets
The doctor conducted many tests to find out why Sarah was feeling sick. Eventually he discovered the reason. He told Sarah that she wasn't necessarily sick, but in fact, she was experiencing the symptoms of pregnancy. That's right, Sarah was pregnant!
This was certainly a shock to the Justices, especially since they had just adopted triplets. Of course, it was incredible news. As stressful as it was going to be to raise three newborn triplets during a pregnancy, Sarah was prepared for the challenge! Little did they know at that point that their blessings weren't going to end there.
Now The Justices Were Going To Have Five Newborns
After years of trying to conceive and unsuccessful fertility treatments, Sarah Justice was convinced that she was barren. She and Andy had forgotten about trying to conceive naturally when they decided to go down the adoption route. But the news of Sarah's pregnancy was a welcome surprise and it didn't end there.
A few months into the pregnancy, the Justices discovered that Sarah was pregnant with twins! News that they were giving birth to more multiples was astounding, especially since they now had to grapple with the fact that they were about to raise five babies at once.
They Got To Experience Raising Newborns And Pregnancy At One Time
Instead of getting stressed out over it, Sarah and Andy Justice saw the humor in the situation and decided to roll with the punches. After all, this was an incredible blessing after years and years of trying.
When they finally took their triplets home, they did the only thing they could and continued to move forward. Sarah and Andy had the unique experience of raising three newborns and experiencing a pregnancy for the first time all at once. It was as if the universe was paying them back for holding out on making the Justices' dream come true.
They Became A Beautiful Family Of Seven In Under A Year
A few months before the triplets turned one year old, Sarah went into labor. After a long delivery, Sarah and Andy welcomed their twins, Andrew and Abigail. Now, they were a happy family of seven with five beautiful babies to raise.
Life for the Justices was finally looking up and they were excited for what was in store with their growing family. Adjusting their family to accommodate two newborns was probably a smooth process since they had months of practice with their triplets. Of course, it was definitely a lifestyle adjustment for Sarah and Andy, who lived with just each other for so long.
Their Community Came Out Of The Woodwork
Many new parents experience a lack of sleep with just one newborn, so imagine how sleep deprived the Justices might have been with five of them! Thankfully, they had the loving support of their family and friends to back them up.
Even the community chipped in to help the Justices adjust to life as new parents. Tulsa's Eastland Baptist Church helped donate food to the growing family by cooking them meals and providing baby formula. Sarah and Andy were blessed to have their community come to their rescue, and food wasn't the only thing that they helped out with.
Strangers From All Over Did What They Could To Help
It wouldn't be out of line to describe the Justice's situation a miracle. When word of their growing family spread, people who were complete strangers even felt compelled to help these new parents.
While friends and family offered to babysit while Sarah and Andy went back to work, there was also an incredible outpouring of support from all over Oklahoma. Strangers sent the Justices diapers, bottles, clothes, and blankets. With five newborns on hand, the Justices expected to go through more than 200 diapers and at least 84 bottles a week!
The Trick They Used To Tell The Babies Apart
There were some definite changes that had to be made in order for the Justices to adjust to life with five newborns. Sarah and Andy had to shift their personal schedules to center around their babies and they also had to invest in a bigger van.
One of the biggest challenges for the Justices, however, was being able to tell their babies apart. Sarah and Andy's trick for this was to paint each baby's toe nails a different color. They used this system for quite some time until the babies began developing distinct personal features and personalities.
After Their Story Went Viral, Something Unbelievable Happened
Sarah and Andy Justice's story is certainly one for the books. Like most things this remarkable that happens in the digital age, the Justices' story went viral. It first gained attention on Facebook, but after their story was shared enough times, more and more people grew obsessed with this miraculous story.
The Justices gained a huge following as people from all over the world wanted to see pictures of the children as they grew up. Their followers also looked forward to updates about the babies' lives. Just as things were about to settle down, however, something else happened to the Justices.
Sarah Discovered She Was Pregnant Again!
By the time the Justices' story went viral, the triplets and the twins were already toddlers. But it was at this point that the family got another bit of huge news that would change their lives yet again.
Sarah discovered she was pregnant again! As overwhelming as it seemed, the Justices were thrilled and took the new challenge in stride. After all, a new newborn would be easy after already having raised one five times over. Sarah welcomed their sixth child, a boy, in 2016. She told Today, "We just really love having these children."
They Now Had The Challenge Of Preparing For Their Sixth
The triplets and the twins were already about two years old by the time the Justices received news that their sixth was on the way. One more baby was a piece of cake, considering that they had just spent a couple years raising five of them.
If anything, some people might consider that it was easier, given the fact that it was just one baby as opposed to multiples! Of course, parenting is a journey no matter how many children you have. With a total of six children in their household, the Justices were met with some unique challenges.
Things Might Have Become A Little Hectic
Having eight people under one roof can get pretty crazy at times. Unfortunately for Sarah and Andy, they don't have the luxury of some of their kids being old enough to take on some of the responsibility.
But this was seemingly no issue for the new parents who had wished and prayed for so long for just one miracle. With triplets Hannah, Joel, and Elizabeth, and twins Abigail and Andrew, they were quite happy to welcome their sixth baby. The parents often take their children on outings despite how difficult it might be to keep track of everyone.
Things Got Pretty Busy As The First Five Became Toddlers
In 2016, Sarah and Andy welcomed their youngest son Caleb into the mix. By this time, the triplets and the twins were nearing four years old. You can bet that the Justice household was pretty busy at this point.
While Caleb was a newborn, Sarah and Andy hardly had to worry about their first five kids, who were already about to complete the process of potty training. As the first five children were beginning to grow and gain some agency, it came as a welcome relief especially since Sarah and Andy were about to raise another newborn.
This Was A Dream Come True For Sarah And Andy
Being overwhelmed was perhaps the last thing on Sarah Justice's mind at this point. After all, her heart and her home was now filled with more love than she had originally asked for.
In an interview with Babyologyin 2016, Sarah said, "Having a number of children is a dream come true. When you wait for something you appreciate it that much more when you get it." Sarah and Andy certainly waited for this moment for a long time. Imagine how happy they were when it finally happened for them! They were so grateful to finally have their dreams come true.
Transitioning To Five Toddler Beds Is A Challenge
Sarah and Andy may have had to adjust their sleep schedules, but eventually the time came for their children to do the same. In 2016, their kids were graduating from their cribs and beginning their transition into toddler beds.
Sarah told Babyology, "Having five in toddle beds is an adventure. But we are getting there." Just imagine having five young children adjusting to a bed without walls. Not only do you have to worry about them falling, but now they have the ability to get out of bed themselves. This can be frustrating, especially when you tell them to go to sleep.
They Developed A Routine For Their New Family
Raising six infants at once is no easy feat, especially when that is your life for 24 hours a day, seven days a week. How do the Justices do it? The most important thing for them was to get extremely organized. Everything about their day is planned out on a schedule.
Schedules are crucial, especially when you're raising a big family. It is also an easy way to keep track of everyone. Days start with a morning walk, followed by playdates with friends or relatives. In the evenings, the family takes on chores together.
Potty Training Five Toddlers At Once Is Perhaps The Biggest Challenge
You can only be so organized, however, before a wrench is thrown into your plans. For Sarah, potty training was that wrench. "Potty breaks are a big part of our day when you have five children at the same life stage," Sarah said.
This can be pretty stressful, depending on how you handle it. Trying to potty train one kid is challenging enough, but when you're doing it for five at once, you're probably prone to an accident or two. It's not like all the childrens' toilet needs are in sync, but at least they have the bond of going through this together!
The Justice Siblings Are Growing To Be Very Close
One amazing benefit to having to so many children – especially if they're relatively the same age – is not having to worry about any one child feeling left out or alone. All of the Justice children will have each other, in addition to all the friends they are bound to make when they start going to school.
The Justice siblings will have a close bond like no other. "We never lack playmates and work to promote love and care between the siblings. Our children will always have a friend and will never need to feel lonely, Sarah told Babyology.
The Older Siblings Adore Their Baby Brother
By the time baby Caleb entered the mix, the Justices were more prepared than they were when their first five came home. It was definitely less stressful. They went from over 300 bottles a week to just a few, since they only had one newborn to feed.
As for whether the siblings would take to their newborn baby brother kindly, Sarah says that they have so far. "All of the kids absolutely adore their 'baby Caleb.' He has the best fan club ever and we cannot imagine life without the sweetest, most loved little guy in the world," Sarah said.
Sarah And Andy's Patience Reaped The Best Rewards
After all has been said and done, Sarah and Andy Justice can rest easy knowing that their prayers have been answered. Knowing that they struggled for years, it's incredible to learn how their story played out in the end.
For their part, they are truly happy and blessed to have the big family that they always dreamed of. "They bring a great deal of joy to our lives and we enjoy watching them love life," Sarah told Babyology. The story of how the Justice family came to be only goes to show that life rewards patience in the most incredible ways.