Diane and Simon's story

When we thought about children, we assumed we would go down the 'normal' route

We both desperately wanted children but after nearly three years of complications and disappointment, we realised it wasn't going to happen. After a disastrous round of fertility drugs we were left with IVF. Twice we got pregnant and twice we lost the babies. We decided enough was enough – we couldn't go through another miscarriage emotionally and physically so we decided to explore adoption. We'd always talked about it alongside having birth children and quickly decided it was the right route for us.

Most people would be daunted by taking on three sisters but we always knew we wanted a large family

We were open-minded when thinking about children. We went on a four-day preparation course and we mentioned we were thinking about having two or three children, or even more. When the social worker spoke to our group about how children are matched, she mentioned a case of three girls who she was struggling to match and spoke about splitting them up. Someone piped up as a joke, "Diane and Simon will have them". During the break the social worker showed us the profiles of these three sisters aged under four and suddenly it seemed very real. We went away and thought about it and realised we were totally serious.

We were invited to a coffee morning and once we saw the video of the girls, we were smitten

I just thought, 'that's it – they're my kids'. I just knew. I run my own business and everything I do is with my head – looking at facts and figures. This wasn't, it was a pure heart decision.

It all happened really quickly – just short of six months from the first course to getting the girls home

KCC really worked hard to speed up the process as it is difficult to find a match for a group of three siblings and they didn't want the children to spend any longer than they had to in care. The last thing we wanted was to split these girls up – the older two could have ended up in long-term foster care and we couldn't see that happen.

The day we first met our children was also our wedding anniversary – the two most important days in our family

On the big day, we were worried – 'what if they rejected us or were slow to warm to us'? We needn't have worried – we pulled up outside on the driveway and three girls bounded out the front door, yelling 'Mummy, Daddy!'. Since then, we've never taken a back step and we have the most amazing connection. Six days later, they were home with us. On the first night we took the girls home, the oldest asked, 'Daddy, will you always look after us?" and I said, "I promise I will always look after you". She replied, "That's OK Daddy, you can be my Daddy forever".

The children are thriving – given the right home, they can fly

We went through all the pain to get to this point and looking back, I think, if we had been able to have our own children, we wouldn't have met our children and I wouldn't change that for the world. I feel like I have the perfect life.

I now talk to other adopters at information events as I want to give something back to Kent County Council. What they've given me is more than I can ever repay. Without them I wouldn't have my family.

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