Unfortunately, that first & last were the same – the Father’s Day of 2016. On June 19th.
The little boy that made any sense to that Father’s day was just 17 days old. Attached to more tubes & wires his body could endure. His chest was closed just the previous day, 9 days after his open heart surgery.
His dad, a nervous, emotional, worried and tired bag of love, stood motionless looking at his son, wondering if he’ll be able to hold him for his second. That was probably the longest he looked at him without a blink. His wife captured that moment on her phone.
He, who had imagined his first Father’s Day to be different, to be slightly colorful, came out of the ICU, teary-eyed, told his wife – “I hope it’s not my last.” His wife vividly remembers that conversation. She knew too, that there’s a possibility that it could be his last. But both of them caught hold on to that one tiny bit of hope that was the only way forward. She didn’t want to give him any false promises. She just smiled. Maybe, held his hands.
When the day started with both of them acknowledging that it’s Father’s Day, with a happy yet worried smile, they didn’t know it could get this intense. A friend who did not have the courage to send him a note, sent her instead:
She passed it on to him. He smiled & responded to that friend with the pic from that day of him looking at his son, standing by his bed – a pic that spoke of multitude emotions.
Later that day, in their hunger for the deserved acknowledgement, they reminded their son’s surgeon that it’s that special day. He’s a father too; he’ll know it.
A while later, when reality slowly started biting, she told him – I don’t think I’ll have my first Mother’s Day with him. And, you may not have your second.” She was right!