Letter To My First Born

Dear Child,

It has been a long wait to meet you; seeing as we have known of your existence for a very long time. We had been expecting to meet you sometime next week but as we know and you will inevitably learn, life doesn't always go to plan.

Two days ago, I awoke bright and early to accompany your mother to a midwife appointment; just a routine checkup, but she felt awfully strange. There were pains coming and going very regularly, we felt like we knew what they were but we weren't going to label them the dreaded 'C' word... 'Contractions'; we convinced ourselves it was JUST terrible wind, it will pass. It didn't.

We took our time in getting to the hospital for what we thought would be just an appointment but it was clear very shortly that your mother was in an awful amount of pain. The 'C' word was used and yes, these were real contractions. You were on the way. We were checked into a room for the routine examinations and while your mother was not in labour, she was almost there.

Your mother has always been an amazing human being. Your mother is kind, your mother is giving, your mother is selfless and awfully empathic. Your mother however was in pain; her contractions were so regular and so strong and she was doubled over in pain on the floor while I sat beside her whispering useless words that floated into the air. I was useless and I knew it; the longer the process went on, the more powerless I felt and I cannot describe the monumental frustrations I felt to you.

The hours went on and it was clear you wanted to meet us as much we have wanted to meet you all these months. Things started happening very quickly, for a first time mother, your mother was progressing really fast and I have never been so proud in my life. With dignity and fortitude and even the odd joke thrown in, your mother went through waves and waves of contractions while waiting for you, but for some reason you changed your mind about coming to meet us... You were no longer in a hurry.

Twenty four hours later and with no change in circumstances, a decision was made and the doctors would perform a 'C-Section' on your mother; they would cut her open and bring you out to us. Cue panic in me and a mental toughness I have never seen your mother display before. "Tell me why we need to do what we have to do, and let's do what's right quickly"... I paraphrased there, but her words and their meaning came similar to that. You too would have been proud.

Your mother was whisked up to the operating theatre, while I was left to wait in a waiting room, donning a set of scrubs and wringing my hands. I have never been so nervous in my life than those moments and the ones that followed. As I walked to the room, the darkest of thoughts came to my head and they were amplified when I saw your mother surrounded by a team of masked surgeons, anaesthetists and nurses with lights beaming down on her and wires and needles seeming to come out of every part of her arms, her face silently pleading at mine for help, me helpless and attempting to feign a courage I did't feel.

It was all I could do not to cry as I held your mothers hand as she shivered and shook with the adrenaline. We smiled at each other through gritted teeth as the surgeons did their job. It seemed like an eternity but then a sound came that we recognised to be yours and then we saw you for long enough to know that you would be our Atlas.

You were born on the 27th of May, 2016 and your name is Atlas; Atlas ~ "For he is a Giant, the best before men. The weight of the world on his shoulders is not too much to endure; You are our world"

As I sat and looked at you in my arms for the first time, I knew a love so different, so new and so powerful that I didn't think possible and I cried. I cried and cried and cried; jerky sobs that were filled with powerful emotion. Atlas, you are mine as much as I am yours forever and always, and I hope one day you read this and know that your father has always and will always love you. As your mother has already proven her love these last few months, I promise I will too.

Yours, Daddy

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I am Timiย