The other day, I was asked what device has played the most pivotal role in my life. My answer was an easy one. My telephone.
As a young child, my telephone allowed me to interact with my dad while he was sick in the hospital with cancer. I can recall waiting patiently
by the phone to have my chance to talk with my dad, to tell him the good and the bad about my day...to ask when he would be home again...to tell him I loved him.
In my pre-teen years, my telephone kept me up-to-date on all of the latest news. I knew who liked who. Who was breaking up. When they were breaking up and why they were breaking up, and I knew all of this information probably even before the couple themselves knew.
By the time middle school came around, my telephone morphed into this "butterflies-in-the-stomach" provoking machine that could either deliver the glorious news that my crush from science class (Joey Dreamy Eyes) liked me, or in one fatal blow, it could deliver the devastating news that he thought I had a good personality, but he liked my friend more. If you're wondering, it was the latter.
And let's not even get into the birth of three way calling and all the drama that caused.
But no matter how I look at it, the phone...my phone definitely had a significant impact on my life. My phone was an avenue to adventure, to promise, to despair, and to hope.
And to be honest, at the age of twenty-nine, not much had changed.
Three weeks after the blood draw, I stood in my third hour class. Only two minutes were left on the clock. My students were diligently writing. The sound of pencil meeting paper was all that could be heard. And as I walked around the room discussing pieces with individual writers, I caught a glimpse of my phone.
The blue light was flashing. I had a missed call. It flashed once. It flashed twice. I made my way casually over to where it was laying.
It flashed three times. Then four. I dismissed the class, and I reached for the phone.
And then, the entire screen filled with light.
An incoming call.
I looked at the numbers appearing before me. It was the doctor's office, and once again, I was filled with adolescent anxiety that only a phone call can induce.
"No news is good news," kept running through my head. And though I desperately wanted to answer that call, I could not bring my fingers to move to hit the answer button. They were frozen. I was frozen. Butterflies danced in my stomach.
I watched my phone screen until it went black, and I then, immediately sent Brent a text message. My hands were shaky, as my thumbs fought against one another to pound out a somewhat intelligible message.
"Doctor called. Call them back," was the best I could do.
I set my phone down and began to walk away, when the screen began to light up again. It was Brent this time, and try as I might, I could not answer the call.
He called me again. And again.
But I did not answer.
Finally, he sent me a text. It said, "Call me."
But I did not.
I could not.
I could not have another conversation at school about the doctor or about Ceci. I could not make it through another, "Come home now...it isn't good," phone call. I was not able to do it emotionally, mentally, or physically.
"I will only call you if it isn't bad," I typed out.
"Call me," was Brent's response.
I clutched my phone tightly in my hands. This was way worse than waiting to hear if Joey Dreamy Eyes, who sits two rows in front of me in fourth hour science class, thinks I'm cute. I transferred my phone from one hand to another and back again. The butterflies were somersaulting and doing back flips at this point. My heart began to pound. I took a deep breath, and with whatever strength I had left, I hit the call button.
I could not talk when Brent answered the phone.
"She's okay," he said.
I nodded my head.
Brent continued, "She doesn't have Down Syndrome."
I sat in complete shock. For the last three weeks, I had believed my child had Down Syndrome, and now, with a simple phone call, I discovered she didn't. My mouth hung open. A student from my next class entered and greeted me. Still, I sat, unable to utter a word.
When the shock had subsided, I was flooded with an enormous amount of hope...the type of hope that only a phone call with good news can bring.
And Joey Dreamy Eyes, if you are reading this, it is totally your loss :)