Thursday, December 13, 2012

the very best phone call

I hate going to the dentist. I mean really- does anyone LIKE going? On the afternoon of December 13, 2010 I was at the dentist for a regular cleaning. I turned my phone off, because after the embarrassment of needing the flossing speech, AGAIN, I didn't need to irritate my hygienist with a poorly timed phone call.  So I did what I usually do at the dentist: I closed my eyes, tried to pretend I was somewhere else, and replayed Bill Cosby's "The Dentist" routine in my head.

"Dentists tell you not to pick your teeth with any sharp, metal objects. Then you sit in their chair, and the first thing they pick up is an iron hook."

I walked home through the dark cold December evening, teeth shiny and slightly irritated from all the cleaning and scraping. I totally forgot to turn my phone on. I remember looking at the Christmas lights hanging up all over and thinking, I'm okay.  Even if we don't get our referral before next year, I'll be okay. I can handle this (interminable, confusing, numbing, frustrating) wait.  We'll have a nice quiet Christmas. Life is good. Sigh.

Then I got home.  And there on our answering machine was a message from our adoption social worker (incredulous that I didn't answer my cell phone).  "I have good news," she said "Call us back!"

I called back, shaking from head to foot.  I think I still had my coat on.  The head of the Ethiopian program was the only one left in the office.  She asked us to come in to see our referral at 4:00PM the next day. She wouldn't tell me anything else.

Except that there were two children.

thanks to Jared Slater for this gorgeous photo of the kiddos, 9/2011

I texted Andrew (who was on the subway heading home, blissfully unaware that our lives had just changed.) "Bring home champagne." He did.  ;)  We drank it, maybe along with some kind of dinner.  Then we called every person in our family. Then we sat and stared at each other.  I think I might have researched bunk beds.  We may have slept. We might have just stared at the ceiling all night.

Sometimes good things do happen when you aren't paying attention.

Sometimes the best phone call of your life happens when your phone is off.

(I still hate going to the dentist though.)

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