Tracy and Sherrie Smith are sisters – and best friends to boot. The duo have been on countless holidays, cared for one another throughout their adult lives, and live together in a house they co-own in Benbrook, Texas.
So it seems beautifully logical that Tracy and Sherrie have now started a family together, too.
It was Tracy who decided she wanted to become a foster parent to four brothers and sisters; Aaron, Bayla, Emma, and Olivia. Social services had taken the children in, as their biological mother is struggling with drugs, and their father is in prison – and they were keen to keep the siblings together.
And, while Sherrie initially wasn’t sure she wanted to become a mother, her sister’s determination eventually won her over.
“We're kind of like, if we enjoy hanging out with each other so much, why not just roll with it, you know?” Sherrie explained to WFAA.
Things became more complicated when social services revealed that the situation had changed and two more siblings from the family needed to be fostered; Franco, three, and Jake, 17 months.
“They said, ‘well, there’s actually six’,” said Tracy. “And they said, ‘but nobody will take six. Nobody’s crazy enough for that.”
But the sisters were crazy enough, and happily informed social services that they were more than willing to help keep the siblings together, and welcome them into their home.
While the new situation wasn’t without its pitfalls (caring for so many kids was never going to be easy), the sisters have never regretted their decision.
So, on 18 November (aka America’s National Adoption Day), they decided to make theirs a ‘forever family’, and officially adopted all six children. They were among 45 families who, collectively, adopted 70 children – but the Smiths took in the most. And it’s thanks to them that their sons and daughters are flourishing, thriving, and living enriched lives.
To quote Jane Howard, “Call it a clan, call it a network, call it a tribe, call it a family: Whatever you call it, whoever you are, you need one.”
No wonder the Smith sisters are now encouraging others to follow in their footsteps and adopt.
Read more: A Stylist reader opens up about adoption
For all those questioning what these ladies will do if they ever meet The One, they had a pretty badass response: “If a man comes along and he's the right one, awesome.
“But it's going to take an even more special man to buy into this.”
Preach on, sisters.