Our attorney told me not to leave the hospital without the medical records.
This is why, when Will was being discharged from the hospital, I asked for his medical records approximately 500,000 times. Everyone kept looking at each other with blank stares, referring me to someone else or telling me where in the hospital to go to find these elusive records. Eventually, we were given an address to a building off site. I was assured by everyone that this was the place to go. It was agreed by everyone that his records wouldn't be there until the next day. I was told by anyone who was anyone to me at the hospital that day to call to get them the next day.
And that is why I left the hospital without Will's medical records. I just assumed that because I was taking with me a WAY to get the records, I was good. Especially because nurses and social workers and everyone involved agreed that that was my best course of action.
You know what happens when you assume.
The next morning, as soon as they were open, I called the records office. It was explained to me that I needed to send a written request and then it would definitely be the next day before I could have access to them. That would put me at Thursday for our ICPC to be completed, Friday (if I was really lucky) to clear California and sometime the next week we'd clear Utah and be able to bring Will home. The woman I spoke to mentioned something about getting them in person if I drove up there.
I hung up and spent the rest of the morning signing documents, scanning documents, sending emails, reading emails. Eventually I realized that, by lunchtime that day, we were only going to be waiting on the medical records. I'd worked my tired tail off. My mom had held my baby ALL morning so that I could finish everything. We were good to go and our lawyer could deliver the finished ICPC the next day, if only we had those medical records.
I called Troy. I told him that I was going to call the records office and beg them to expedite Will's records and get them to me that day. I asked him to pray that I would get a sympathetic ear on the other end of the phone. He told me that if I could drive up that afternoon and get them, to go for it.
I called back around 11:00. I explained the situation and that I'd been told that they would be ready the next day via email. I said that I knew I could pick them up in person but it was a two hour drive and was there any way that I might be able to get them emailed to me that day? Pretty please. (With a cherry and whipped cream and sprinkles and all kinds of good stuff on top?)
The woman on the phone sounded baffled. She wanted to know who I'd talked to. I couldn't remember the woman's name which was probably good for that woman because, apparently, I'd been told completely wrong. It would, in fact, take five to seven business days from the time they received my request and there was no possible way I could pick them up in person. FIVE TO SEVEN BUSINESS DAYS PLUS TIME TO PROCESS PAPERWORK IN CALIFORNIA AND UTAH MIGHT AS WELL HAVE PUT WILL AT HIS 12th BIRTHDAY BEFORE HE EVER MET HIS FAMILY.
(I'm prone to exaggeration.)
I am a by the book, letter of the law, just the facts, ma'am, kind of of individual. I'm not a rule breaker or a rule bender. The usual me would have said, "Thank you for your time. Please get those to me as soon as you can." and then I would have hunkered down at my parents' house for an extra week. But something snapped in my brain. I think it was the part of my brain that controls my heart. My heart couldn't handle being away from my big boys for that long. Or from Will's daddy. I started to cry.
I realized that I was desperate to get home to them. So desperate that I was willing to beg, plead and sob over it. I'm equal parts humiliated and impressed. "This is the absolute last piece I am waiting on," I cried. "My husband and children are in Utah and I am here with our new baby and these records are the only thing I am waiting for. Please. Is there anything you can do?"
She put me on hold.
I prayed that she would be able to help me. Several minutes later she came back on the phone and told me that they would be in my email by 5:00 that night. THAT WOULD MEAN THAT OUR ICPC WOULD BE DELIVERED THE NEXT DAY (WEDNESDAY) AND THERE WAS A SLIGHT POSSIBILITY IT WOULD CLEAR BOTH STATES BEFORE THE WEEKEND! I was now celebrating in hopeful anticipation of flying home on Saturday to see my family. She said, "God bless you. And God bless your baby."
"God bless YOU! Thank you so much!" I cried into the phone.
Those records were in my inbox before 1:00 pm.
Our entire adoption story is a miracle of God changing hearts. Even after Will was home with me, God changed hearts. He bent rules and expedited things that ordinarily wouldn't be expedited.
I picked Will up on June 6. Our ICPC was completed on June 7 and hand delivered on June 8. California has a reputation (at least in Utah) for taking a long time to clear. It cleared that same day. We cleared Utah on Thursday, June 9. I received a verbal okay from Utah around lunch time and I booked a flight home.
That night, we landed at midnight...
God is good.