I wrote this the night we got the call... it's probably scattered and crazy. But that's kind of how it feels to get a referral, so I didn't go back and edit it!!!
I was 100% not expecting the call today! In fact, I didn't even know where my cell phone was and I was in the back yard with my mom (who's in town visiting from Florida!) and Riley. I had come back inside to check on Allyn, who was still napping. And I got sucked into facebook. So I was checking facebook when my phone rang. I saw 817 and I think I said something like "OH MY GOSH!" And ran outside, since my phone doesn't work well in the house!
It was Sara, our wonderful caseworker saying these beautiful words "I have your referral ready for you."
Of course Rob was not home. It was his day off and he had run to the bank & the post office. I told Sara I'd call him, get him back home and we'd call her back. I had always thought I would calmly ask her how old our baby was, then would calmly call Rob and ask him nicely to come home. ha. I didn't ask Sara any questions because my brain turned to mush. Crying, standing in the front yard (because my mom & R were in the back yard), I called Rob and somehow managed to say "COME HOME NOW! SARA JUST CALLED!" At least that's what I thought I said. Rob had no clue what I was saying and it seemed to take a long time to explain! He was in the middle of dealing with a minor situation at the bank! This is the bank where we'd gotten lots of our adoption stuff notarized so they always ask him how it's going... they were really sweet when he said he had to go!
I ran to the back yard and started yelling at my mom & Riley that we'd gotten the call. I must have looked like a crazy woman!! :) Of course Riley thought that meant we'd be bringing the baby home today so I had to slow down enough to explain a little better. Then I ran inside to get the computer set up in our room so we could look at the referral in there once Rob got home.
He was probably home in less than 10 minutes but I couldn't wait and called him again. He was on our street! When he came home, we got Riley & my mom settled in to watch "The Llama Movie" (which is what my kids call The Emperor's New Groove) and we called Sara back.
She emailed us the referral and some pictures. The whole thing was kind of surreal. He is so beautiful. And I had read enough "THE CALL" blog posts to know that I was in for an emotional rollercoaster. After we got off the phone, we sat and looked through the 7 pictures we have over and over again. Probably 47 times at least.
It was tough. First I was crying for joy because this was a moment we'd waited so long for - to find out who our child is, to see his face. Then I was crying because I was learning the reason why he needs to be adopted. Next I was grieving for his birth parents; then I was grieving for him. I thought the worst part would be finding out his story... I was wrong. The hardest part is what we don't know. It's the pieces of information about his life that are missing - the questions I will never be able to answer for him. I think I cried hardest over that.
The rest of the day was a whirlwind. My brother just happened to be coming over tonight too so we waited until he got here to tell him. It was wonderful to get to see my mom and brother's reactions to the pictures. And we called our family and close friends.
And here's the other hard part. We decided long ago that we were not going to share any of our son's information. We've decided that it is his story to tell and we'll help him decide when and to whom he shares the story, but that he will have a say in that. There are two reasons this is hard for me. First, it's hard not to tell our family, who we know love him already. It is hard to tell them that we aren't sharing that information with them. I know they want to know and that, right now, when they can't meet him, that precious information we have is the only way they can get to know him. The other reason is that I am a sharer. I talk. I desperately want to share this experience with the people I love. I want to talk about how hard it is to deal with his story. Thank God for Rob - and maybe pray for him, 'cause he'll be hearing from me a lot! But I am glad for this decision. This is not about me, not about how I'm handling the circumstances of his adoption. It's his story to tell and I will allow him to tell it.
After we took our time reading through the referral, I called our pediatrician because I wanted to run a few things by her. She is just amazing. She called me back right away and celebrated with us. I just love her.
While we were waiting for her to call back, we returned to my mom & Riley and told them his name and age. Once Allyn was up from her nap, we put the kids in front of the computer and let them click through all the pictures. Riley seemed to think it was incredibly cool that they took a naked picture of him and then took notice of what he was wearing in every other picture. Allyn just kept looking at the pictures and when we asked her what she thought she'd say "good!" We let Riley pick which picture my mom would see first - of course he picked the naked one. So my mom joined the kids and got to see the pictures too!
The rest of today is a blur. We are overjoyed to finally see the face of the one we've prayed for for the last 18 months. I'm SO ready to have him now. I know he's out there - I can't stop wondering what he's doing now.