Queen was right on the money!!

My sincerest apologies for taking such a long break between posts…but there’s been rather a lot going on in our normally quiet lives.

The main event has been the birth of my niece, your cousin. Yup, early Monday morning saw the arrival of JL, aunty Kay’s little girl. As you know, aunty Kay is my one and only sister and it was her announcement that she was pregnant (along with a similar announcement a few weeks before that from your mom’s best friend) that started us off on this TTC journey. So, if nothing else gives us a clear indication of the passing of time while trying to get you guys, it’s been the last few weeks.

I spent Sunday night at the hospital with Nan waiting for JL to make her appearance. I could tell that Nan was beside herself with worry about the birth and wanted to be right there in case anything happened….and I didn’t want her sitting there all night alone.

There’s a strange thing about my side of the family that I never realised until your mom pointed it out – we’re all so close and love each other to bits and happily spend copious amounts of time together, but we don’t really like to talk about things that stir up the emotions. There are things that have happened to our family that no-one talks about. For example, I only found out when I was 14 or 15 that Nan & Granddad had had another child before me…that they’d had a little daughter while they were still living in England, but that she was born prematurely and died. It was only when talking to Nan recently about the struggles we’re having with the emotional side of TTC that she talked to me about her experience with losing her first child…and I’m 35! She told me of the incredible sense of wrongness, the loss, the fact that all of a sudden, everyone around her seemed to have a little baby girl, how she could understand why someone would walk into a hospital and steal a baby. The hurt she felt when an acquaintance had a prem baby not long after that and theirs had survived and how unfair life felt. She didn’t say it in as many words, but I got the feeling that a large part of the reason they chose to emigrate to South Africa was to try a fresh start, get away from all the memories surrounding the death of their first child. I can only imagine the strain they must have been under and can’t even imagine the heartache they endured.

So, Nan has been a bundle of nerves the whole way through aunty Kay’s pregnancy. The pregnancy was classified a ‘high-risk’ pregnancy from the start because of aunty Kay’s high blood pressure, so it’s been tense 9 months. I knew she was besides herself with worry.

So, coming back to the last few days, we got a phone call just after lunch time on Sunday to say that they were rushing her to the hospital because her contractions were 3 minutes apart and a minute long. Mom and I went round to the hospital to see how things were going and sat in the waiting room for a couple of hours with Nan & Granddad. Around 5 o’clock, they told us that they’d finished all the tests and getting her settled, but that she was only 3cm dilated so was going to be a good few hours before the birth. We popped over the road for some dinner and I watched Nan the whole time…she was fidgeting and tapping her leg, obviously wanting to get back to the hospital rather than sitting in a restaurant 200 meters away. So, when we went back after dinner and sat there for a while, I knew that Nan wasn’t going to want to leave.

We went home for a little while and then Nan and I went back. I packed a flask and some cool drinks and my book, while Nan had her book and some sudoku puzzles and we went and camped out in the waiting room inside the maternity ward. We sat there from just after 9pm…just the two of us. We did some chatting (but not too loudly as we didn’t want to keep all the ladies in the ward awake with our nattering), some reading (until they turned out most of the lights), but mainly just sat there with our thoughts. Uncle M finally came through just before 2am to tell us that it was all over and that he had a little daughter. Nan and I were obviously thrilled and were even happier when the nurse said they’d let us in to see the new arrival as soon as it was appropriate. So we waited another hour till just after 3am to finally have a chance to meet the newest member of the family. It was a very special and emotional time, as I’m sure you can imagine. We finally headed home around just after 3:30am agreeing we’d see each other back there at 9am when visiting hours opened.

It was a long night, but I was glad I’d kept Nan company – I think she would have gone to pieces if left alone in the dark waiting room for so many hours not knowing what was going on.

I spent hours sitting there in the dark imagining what this would be like as ‘the father’…sitting in the rooms around the corner with my wife hooked up to the electronic monitoring equipment…holding her hand through the contractions…feeling the excitement growing and growing as we approached THE moment…talking to the nurses and doctor…watching all the preparations…discussing how our lives are about to be forever changed. Knowing that this will be one of the most special moment of our lives…knowing that any minute we will get the first real glimpse of our child…the first touch…the first sounds…

And sitting in the dark, in the dead quiet of the maternity ward with tears rolling down my face, I really realised for the first time without a shadow of a doubt, that I want to be a father…I want to be your dad…I want to hold you when you’re this tiny baby…I want to hold you when you cry, when you smile, when you blow bubbles and when you stare out at this big new world. I want to help you learn how to crawl, and then walk. I want to teach you how to speak, how to read, how to write and do sums. I want to be there when you find a snail in the garden and try to eat it. I want to catch you as you jump off the edge of the pool or slide down a slide. I want to sit around a campfire with you fast asleep in my arms. I want to see the wonder in your eyes as we show you spiders and butterflies, lions and monkeys, dogs and elephants. I want to cheer on the side of the field as you take part in whatever sport you decide. I want to walk on the beach with you, paddling in the sea, digging in the tidal pools and collecting shells. I want to help you to cook breakfast on mothers day, to bake a cake, to ride a bicycle. I want to sit and watch Finding Nemo with you till we can both recite it word for word. I want to chase you screaming round the garden with the hosepipe on a hot summer’s day. I want to take you to school on your first day, holding your hand as you nervously see all these new kids you’re going to grow up with. I want to sit for hours on uncomfortable chairs in the school hall for your two lines in the play. I want to help you with your school projects, homework and hobbies. I want to buy you a camera and teach you all about photography, nature and the world we live in. I want to spoil you at Christmas time and have a million kids tearing the house apart on your birthdays. I want to laugh when you cut your own hair or trim your own eyebrows. I want to giggle when we catch you trying to feed your vegetables to the dogs, or trying to hide something you’ve broken because you’ve inherited your mother’s clumsiness. I want to read you bedtime stories and take you to the movies. I want to take you out to a restaurant after your bedtime in your dressing gown and slippers. I want to have your drawings stuck all over my office, on the fridge and in your bedroom. I want to kick a ball with you, take you snorkelling somewhere tropical, get you your own camping gear with your own sleeping bag and head torch and penknife. I want to talk to you about religion and the universe and why Barney is such a funny colour. I want to play you Tchaikovsky and Metallica and listen to whatever rubbish you and your friends think is the latest best music ever. I want to put a plaster on your knee and kiss it better, I want to play monopoly and chess and hide-and-seek. And when I’ve done all of this with you, I want to do it with you and your sister or brother too.

I want it all…and I want it now!!!

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~ by HopelesslyTTC on 22/09/2009.

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