Sunday, January 12, 2014

The Call

After awhile you stop expecting the call. An unknown phone number pops up and you assume the mundane- a telemarketer, a dental appointment or someone reminding you that your dog needs a haircut. You stop expecting the unexpected. You stop holding your breath when you pick up the phone in that moment after you say hello. You expect the ordinary.

And then one day, you pick up the phone. You might be in the middle of something else, possibly you don't even glance at the caller I.D. You're cooking dinner or talking to your child or telling the dog to stop barking. So you pick it up and forget to hold your breath.

You should've held your breath.

Because what comes next is anything but ordinary. The opposite of mundane. You have been matched with a child. Your child. This someone for whom you've prayed about, cried over, filled out mountains of paperwork, hoped, dreamed, imagined. Suddenly, he exists. Suddenly he is a person. A boy. With dark hair and eyes, 9 pounds, 6 ounces, 21 inches. And with a name that his birth mother has chosen for him. And you have been invited into the amazing journey of being his mother. It's the call. That call you stopped waiting for at some point along the way.

When you burst into tears, your social worker laughs. She's never heard you cry before but she knows the wait has been long and emotional. You can tell she loves getting to make this kind of phone call. This, this is why she does this. It's still not final, you hear her say, though it's very likely. Things could happen, be cautious, and you know she's right. You know you must guard your heart against more disappointment but you can't help it. The tears keep falling and you find yourself laughing and stumbling over words. What questions do you have, she asks? Oh, just a thousand, you know. None of which you can put into words yet.

So you take a moment. You call your husband, share the news and burst into tears all over again. You tell him about your son. You take in his dumbfounded silence. Your lives have changed in less time than it takes to shower and get ready in the morning. You got the call.

Who do we call, who do we tell? How do we break the news to our son? Do we set up the crib or do we wait until the court date is done? What risks do we take and where do we move forward with abandon? Do we leave facebook for the next 30 days while we wait so we aren't tempted to tell anyone? Or do we tell the world and risk having to tell them all over again if something happens?

The whirlwind of what's and how's will not slow down for awhile. So you go about making dinner. You play with your son and repair his broken light saber. You listen to him talk with his guinea pigs and anticipate the look on his face when you tell him that night at dinner. You think about the fun of telling all the grandparents.

And you pause. You thank God deeply. It hasn't been easy. You haven't always trusted Him on this journey. In fact, you've been downright angry sometimes. But you know He's stuck by you. You know He loves this little boy and has been waiting for him longer than you have. And you know he'll be in the next part of this wait. These 30 days of paperwork and court appearances and tracking down of a birth father. You know the reality that this could fall through, but you praise God anyway and hope for the reality that this boy, this sweet little boy, will be a part of your forever family.

You got the call. And it changed everything.