This is rather belated, but I can still relate to this experience as if it only happened yesterday, The Day you were born, almost eight years ago.
You came to us in moments of ‘crisis’. Your mother was admitted to the hospital on schedule for your delivery, and we waited in the waiting room for your arrival and in the week hours of your birthday, the nurse came into the waiting room and hurriedly wheeled your mother off to the ‘OT’, the Operating Theater. Which I learned from one of the nurses that your heart beat has fallen and there was fetal distress. They didn’t know why but they know that there was a level of danger. Which warrants a Cesarian delivery.
I later learned that when our Gynecologist took you out, the umbilical cord was wrapped around your neck, of course suffocation will follow. Till this day, the joke is that you were playing with your umbilical cord, and that is how it got wrapped around your neck.
When they wheeled you out of the OT, in a clear plastic tub, it wasn’t like how the Hollywood dramatised it. There was no drama, I didn’t feel any sense of a Fatherhood Feeling, whatever that might means. In fact it was rather anti-climatic, I didn’t feel much more than a sense of ambivalence! No overwhelming sense of joy, love and all that stereotypical stuff, just a ‘Okay, now what?’
The nurse was all business, she showed the ‘dad’ (me) that you have ten fingers, ten toes, weighed you, measured your height. You were already wailing a little, and you wailed differently from the rest of the newbies in the Baby Room. Your mum and I can pick out that distinct wail from the rest of your colleagues in the Baby Room.
After the ‘Okay, now what?’ feeling, I realised that there is a lot of work for me to do, between us, your mother already had a head start, she had you in the most intimate way possible, carrying you for 9 months, the dad? All i could to was care for you by proxy, I cared for your mum, so that she can in turn care for you.
Now that you are out, you and me have a lot to work on, building this father/son bond. Being a dad to me is a on-the-job thingy. It has been challenging and it is still challenging for me.
First posted on Apr 22, 2013