3 Jul 2007

That Life Changing Moment. Long

We are back and had a really super time. Thank you for all your anniversary wishes. I will post more about the weekend in a day or two but today is the anniversary of "The Call".

As I have mentioned before we didn't blog or belong to any yahoo groups when we adopted Lily so we just sailed along surviving on information from our agency. We were emailed a list of families that we were likely to travel with so we all started emailing back and forth. We were the chatty ones ( surprising? I think not!) along with another family who we became quite close to well before we travelled. Jeff and I would email back and forth and on occasion we would phone each other. He kept abreast of all the groups and seemed to really know his stuff. Back in 2003 we were told the wait would be approx' 14 months. The SAR's outbreak gripped China and all things adoption came to a halt. This was so sad but it was out of our control. According to Jeff the CCAA was still matching but was not referring during this time. He also said that the CCAA had started to refer 2 and 3 months worth at a time and once the travel ban was listed we could be next. I thanked him for that information but really didn't think he could be correct. I mean our agency said 14 months and it had been 12.

Jacob was so nervous during our adoption process that I gave up telling him anything unless it was a definite thing. Every morning when I woke up I would check the World Health Organisation's (WHO) website to see the latest SAR's stats and one day I finally broke down and blurted out to hubby that if no more SAR's outbreaks were reported that day the ban would be lifted tomorrow. He grunted but that was about it! The next morning the W.H.O. lifted the travel ban. Jeff emailed and said we could be next. As many of you know that means nothing as pigs could also fly but until you see one you don't actually believe it. On July 2nd I told Jacob we could be getting a referral any day now and I swear on my life this was his response, "Don't tell me this crap I only want to know for sure things".

On the morning on the 3rd I received a very early morning email from Jeff saying he thought today would be the day. It was a Friday and the Friday before a long weekend so the wait was going to get even more wicked if it didn't happen. By 9.00am I got another email saying the boards were lighting up with referrals. I swear I had no idea what boards he was talking about but it was good enough for me. I ran and checked the phone, it was working. I checked my cellphone, it was working and ditto my pager. I had one back then for work. We must have emailed every 10 minutes. I was a wreck. I hadn't said anything to Jacob cos he only wanted for sure stuff. I paced, I hyperventilated, I paced, I checked all the phones. I rang myself 800 times to be sure everything was fine and I paced a little bit more. Our agency is in Seattle so they are 3 long hours behind us so it was going to be a long day but I was ready, whatever that meant.

I only had one appointment that day in the afternoon so I knew everything would be fine. I swear my heart was trying to pound out of my chest. The excitement was killing me. The emails continued and time kept passing with no call. Jeff finally asked me to ring WACAP and see if they had received their referrals, I did. The girl that answered the phone said I couldn't speak to my coordinator as they had just received the referral package and were trying to get through it that day so that the new parents would know before the long weekend but that she would ring me back. I think I hung up without saying a word. I immediately rang Jeff at work and said they were in.

I rang Jacob and told him that today could be the day. He grunted. I tested all the phones again, and then decided I had to get out of the house. I took furniture to the charity shop. I mean lots of heavy furniture all by myself. Lifting it didn't appear to be a problem. I suddenly realised I was a nutcase for leaving the house and raced back home to check the phone and pace some more.

By now it was getting late and I had to go to work at 5.50 for a 6pm appointment. Note I say, had to go to work (?) the most important day of my life and I am going to work. Oh my how things have changed! It was 5.45 and I swear Jeff and I must have sent 50 emails each when suddenly the phone rang and it was not them but Jeff saying he had a daughter. He couldn't say much as he was on the other line with his wife but I was to stay put as they were calling me in a minute. I hung up and thought, Oh my God I have to go to work NOW. I got in my car shaking and breathing like a woman in labour and started to drive to my client. I had just made it to the end of the street and my phone rang even though by now I was convinced it was broken. When I glanced at it I saw the number was from Seattle and I knew it was the call. I couldn't answer it not in the car. Then my pager went off. I got to my clients house and my phone rang again. He had been my client for years and my accountant for even longer so he knows us very well. He told me to answer the phone and I told him I couldn't as it was our agency calling to say we had a daughter. He said, answer it and I again said I can't. He said I will then, and I told him no.

I knew that I had to be in my own home to take the call as I would probably fall apart. He told me to leave and I said no, I would do his massage????(don't even think about asking me where my brain was cos I have no idea). I did his massage in about 1 minute it was meant to be an hour and I took off like a bat out of hell. I swear I drove home doing 100 which is no easy feat if you knew where I was. I rang Jacob to tell him that we had been called and he said he knew they called him too but he didn't answer cos he wanted me to hear the news first.

I took a deep breathe and with pen and paper in hand I dialed them back. I asked to speak to Sharon and they said she was gone for the day. My heart sank. They said to hold on cos Elizabeth R had our information. This voice came on the phone and said, Dawn, you have a baby girl and she is beautiful. She then told me her name her birth date and where she was from. We were expecting to be referred a toddler so when she said her birth date was 6-6-2002 I wrote down 6-6-2000. She said some other stuff but I was deaf. Then I realised something was wrong with what I had written and asked to repeat the birth date and she did. I was in shock, she wasn't 3 she was just a year old, a baby, my baby. Oh my God. She asked if I had any questions and I am sure I was meant to have loads but I said no. She then said go and check your computer her photos are there. We said good bye and I hung up and cried and cried and cried. Through my tears I rang Jacob and said, Hi daddy. He of course said, what did you call me that for? I told him he was a daddy and all the information we had. I told him I would not open the email until he got home and I hung up. About 3 seconds after that I threw up! I was shaking so much and by now it was to late to ring my folks in the UK so I just wandered from room to room with a sh*t eating grin on my face. I had to wait for Jakey to get home and that wouldn't be another 2 hours. I kept logging on to the computer and checking that the email was still there.

Finally Jacob rang and said he was on his way. In my head I drove him home, he wasn't driving as fast as my head! When he walked in we just laughed and smiled and said it has finally happened and all that kind of stuff and then he jumped in the shower cos he (are you ready for this) wanted to be nice and clean when he saw his daughter for the first time. To give the poor guy some credit in this post he was super quick. We sat down together at the computer and opened the email. Back then we had dial up so first we saw her hair and then it disappeared and her nose appeared. Without saying anything to each other we both got up and ran from the room. We waited until she had downloaded and ran back in. We looked and we both started to cry. Jacob said, she is the most beautiful child I have ever seen and I just stared at her. She was beautiful beyond words. She was my heartbeat.

We memorised every single piece of her and then all hell broke loose and we started making phone calls and emailing her picture to everyone. We printed out a gazillion pictures and put them everywhere around the house. Since Jacob was so superstitious along the way many of our friends and some of his family didn't even know we were adopting so the phone calls went on for hours. We finally fell into bed and lay there talking about Lily, our girl, our child, our kid, our daughter. It felt so great. For sure we were the only people in the world that had ever done this. Even Jacob was invincible at this point. No more Mr Scared Silly. I don't think we slept we just talked about Lily and how she was the most beautiful girl ever and how we would do this with her and that with her and before we knew it it was morning and we needed to get out of bed. I ran and checked email and no sooner had I done that my Mum rang and she was hysterical and couldnt stop crying. The phone calls carried on all day and then my dad rang to say Lily was the best birthday present he had ever received, (he really does know just what to say) He received the photo the following morning which is in fact his birthday.

That was the call that changed our lives forever. The feeling doesn't go away it just gets better and better. And here is the face that made everything in life so perfect.

I can't wait to go through it again but this time there is no way I am going to work if I am expecting the call.

Am I the only one crying again?


Briana's Mom said...

What a beautiful story! I feel like it is referral day all over again!

Dannye said...

no you are not the only one!! big ole tears are falling over here too, thanks for sharing that story!!

now I am late for work so I gotta go!!

Pug Mama said...

thank you soooo much for this post. I was there with you in the moment!!!!!

Gracie said...

That was such a sweet story! It did make me tear up!

Holly said...

That is such a wonderful post.

3D said...

Nope...I am too. What a great story. It is as funny and charming as you two are. Thanks for sharing.

Keep smilin!

P.S. Happy Anniversary!!!

P.P.S. Can not see the pic...poo!

redmaryjanes said...

I love to hear everyone's story. It tears me up but it's also soothing because I know that our day will come.

Patricia/NYC said...

No, you are NOT the only one crying! Tears streaming down my face right now...thanks for sharing your wonderful story with us! I could feel every emotion in every word you wrote & it felt like referral day all over again!

That is a day which is impossible to forget & none of the details ever fade!

By the way, your DH sounds very much like mine! ;) Mine NEVER wanted to hear ANY of the rumors, etc! AND...to boot...was putting up a plasma TV the day we got "THE CALL"! lol!

I LOVE referral stories!! :)
lucky momma to a sweetie from Hubei

Special K said...

Great story. But I can't see the pic either. Grrr...

Pug Mama said...

read your comment on my blog about wanting to set a tent up on my land ... hee-hee!
Wanna meet a WHOLE BUNCH of bloggers in a few weeks at my place instead?
email me if interested.

Ann said...

I love all the details of your story, and yes I have tears in my eyes. So great. But wait I can't see her picture!!

Sophie's Mom said...

I felt like I was there! What a touching story. She is a beautiful girl, congratulations!

Life with JJ, Starr and Spice said...

Oh my goodness Dawn; your referral story is awesome and priceless. Your Lily is a beautiful and amazing child and her sister will be equally so. I can hardly wait to till the next "call"

Kris said...

Holy mother of God, no, I'm crying so hard I'M about to vomit.

My god I can't wait to know what this feels like, finally... finally.

Steffie B. said...

That was a beautiful story...full of memeories and love....BEAUTIFUL!

Ani said...

I love this story!!!! You had me crying right along with you :)

PIPO said...

Dawn, thanks for giving that play-by-play story. I LOVE reading those stories. It's so uplifting.

I am cracking up at Jacob showering before looking. And I thought I was a goofball!?!

Ah, when the day comes for me everyone from the midwest to the entire eastern seaboard will be aware.

Kris said...

Take Melissa up on this offer woman!! You could hitch a ride with me (I'm north of you, right?)

Nikki said...

I'm crying too!
I had goosebumps reading your beautiful story -- brought back so many memories for me too.
Lily's referral photo is, of course, perfect.
Can't wait to live the next life changing moment with you, girl.

Two Kayaks said...

Okay, the title of this post should have read:
"That Life Changing Moment - Grab Kleenex!"
What a beautiful post, Dawn and so heartfelt. I felt like I was living each moment with you. So sweet!

insanemommy said...

Oh, my gosh. Me too. I was with you every step of the way as you were leading us down memory lane. I could feel every heart beat and almost here you breathing. Yes, you'll never forget. Beautiful!!

Judy said...

What a great post! I love your story. I got so caught up in the moment. Lily is precious.


Anonymous said...

A little late -- but I LOVED it!!!!!


Related Posts with Thumbnails