The first time I was to become a parent, I only really became aware of it when we went for the first x-ray at the clinic. Up until then, I did witness the pink pregnancy test and Cat’s belly growing bigger and bigger and I did know why… but the realisation came only when watching that first black and white footage.
However strong that feeling was, the one I had when I first felt her kicking against my cupped hand was something else. Something more. The igniting of another sense… a palpable one rather than something I was watching on TV. The first communication with daddy, a kick that said “Yeap, this is happening!! I’m here and I’m for real”.
The birth experience can only be described as transcendent. When her head was first visible I became part of a living dream that had its highest moment when she came out. I was semi-awaken from it by the most wonderful sound that I have ever heard… her first cry. Still in a haze, I cut her umbilical cord and held her. That was, by far and large, the best and most magical experience of my life.
When Cat was pregnant of our second girl, I usually forgot she was pregnant. I didn’t want to admit it, but felt a lot better when Cat confessed to feeling the same way (after the first sickness trimester). Having one moving around outside didn’t allow for much awareness of the one still inside. That is, until the kicking started again… then daddy became ‘re-aware’.
Her birth was also immeasurably emotive and I’m privileged to have been a part of it. However, the experience I had with the delivery of my firstborn was unique.
My dear ‘Chumbita’, when you read this many years from now, know that daddy loves you no less and no more than your siblings. You are, together with your mother, the most important people in my life and there is nothing I would not do for you. Nothing!
In August 2016, we confirmed that Cat’s constant sickness was indeed the result of our planned and anticipated 3rd seed. The news brings a renewed and familiar sense of happiness. The third act of the magic show had begun and based on the previous performances, it was going to get ever better.
We were holidaying in Portugal, on the eve of boarding a plane to Azores. The happiness the moment I found out was immense, but once again, the parental realisation came only weeks afterward, back in Noosa, on the 14 week scan.
I had both my girls sitting on my lap, whilst mummy was laying down with her belly all jellied up and the rolled shaped apparatus was moving from one side to the other. “Look girls, that’s your sibling. We still don’t know if it’s a boy or a girl, but you’ll have to take good care of it.” Their mesmerised eyes made me feel like squeezing them hard.
It’s a normal foetus that seems to be growing healthy. In 6 weeks’ time, we’ll get to know if we’ll be having another baby girl or otherwise. Regarding gender, I sincerely have no desire either way. All I wish for is that it is a healthy baby… boy or girl does not matter at all. It’s going to be a Benfica supporter anyway.
In all honesty, I keep forgetting that Cat’s pregnant again, and according to our family planning, for the last time. Sometimes I feel that I should be taking more out of it, but the truth is that I am only reminded that she’s pregnant when she complains about how sick she feels. I guess I’ll have to wait until the kicking starts.
In reality, I am taking a lot out of this 3rd experience. I usually start working late in the evenings, so they’re all asleep by the time I get home, but this scheduling allows me to spend the entire day with them… life is bliss.
I have been enjoying our new life very much. We go to the beach daily (where I see Cat’s unconcealed belly) and get to spend many hours together and even alone in each other’s company. Cat and I give each other a few hours of ‘me time’ which allows me to write, garden and surf. Cat’s been spending her ‘me time’ reading and with healthy walks along the beach – she seems less sick and more energetic since she started these.
It’s heart-warming to see the two sisters kissing and caressing mummy’s inflating belly. The eldest does make full sentences of the situation “Mummy’s got a baby inside her tummy”, whilst the youngest adopts the single word approach, reinforced by a pointing finger “Bebe”.
All in all, life is very, very good and about to get even better!!