History teacher, assistant athletic director and soccer coach Annie Wayland takes on a new role in life


Dani Meyer

Arriving at senior Dani Meyer's house for a team dinner, coach Annie Wayland is greeted with a surprise baby shower. The team each printed off their baby pictures, and included one of Wayland as well. “I’m so overwhelmed with the love, support and generosity of my soccer girls and families. I feel so lucky and blessed to have them in my life. It touched my heart more than they will ever know, and it’s a day I will never forget,” Wayland said.

After the eight-month process to become a licensed foster parent, assistant athletic director Annie Wayland is now prepared to care for a child in need of a home.

“I have always wanted to be a mom for as long as I can remember.  After the Foster and Adoptive Care Coalition became our last year’s philanthropy group, the concept of possibly fostering began to grow in my heart. I knew I had the means to be able to provide for a child that needed help/assistance and I wanted to have the opportunity to do so,” Wayland said.

Wayland had to do phone interviews, home visits, reach 27 hours of trauma training, submit more than 20 documents to the state and complete hours of homework. Additional training will continue after she becomes licensed.

“It was very difficult [and] time consuming but a rewarding process to do all the training necessary to get my license to foster. Luckily, I have an amazing support system at home and here at school that helped make this training possible for me and my schedule,” Wayland said. “So many things about this process are very emotional. These poor kids have gone through so much to result being in this system, so my heart constantly hurts for them and what their experiences must be like. I look forward to doing my best to bring joy, safety, consistency and love to their lives.”

Wayland is still awaiting the specifics about her foster child, and does not know when she will be asked to receive them.

“I won’t know who I am getting until the absolute last minute. Once I am called, I could get that child the same day, or I could get them two weeks from the day they asked me to take them,” Wayland said. “All of it is dependent on the child’s situation, which I cannot prepare for.”

The opportunity to adopt is Wayland’s goal, although that is not always a possibility.

“Adopting is ultimately the plan for me! Although I have no idea the timeline of that happening, I am keeping an open mind and heart and seeing what options will be made available for me,” Wayland said.

Wayland is excited about opening her home to a child and experiencing life with them.

“I am looking forward to taking them places, experiencing new things with them and just making them feel safe and loved,” Wayland said.

While Wayland is nervous for the new experience, she is ready for any obstacles that might occur.

“There are so many amazing people in this world that juggle work life and personal life with children on a daily basis and do a wonderful job. It’s going to be a challenge, but one I am ready for,” Wayland said.

Wayland is counting on the love and support of her friends and family to help her along this journey.

“I hope reunification with family is what is best for the child. I hope that this all happens so the child doesn’t continue to suffer additional losses or separation,” Wayland said. “[I want the child] to feel safe, loved and supported in my home, and that we change each other’s lives for the better.”