I have never known greater joy in my life than I did on November 14, 2001.
I first found out about you in a Saint Patrick’s Day card. In it was a pregnancy test, showing the positive results, and a card that read, “You’re going to be a Dad!”
I was shocked. My excitement, joy, and fear swelled like a tsunami and crashed over me all at once, and I didn’t know what to think, feel, or do. I embraced your mom and wept a little. I shook, trembled like an autumn leaf clinging desperately to the twig before the final blusters of fall sweep it away.
I started talking to you when you were four months old, in the warm, safe darkness of your watery home. I’d tap on Mommy’s tummy three times; wait a moment; tap three more times, then begin speaking. I didn’t know if you were a boy or a girl yet, so I spoke to you as “baby”. I made sure you heard my voice, along with your mom’s and her heartbeat. Every day, three times a day, I spoke to you. I remember that day, when I tapped three times and waited, tapped three more times and didn’t speak. I remember how you kicked so hard, jarred your mom’s whole frame, to let me know you were ready, waiting for that message.
My eyes beheld you first the day we officially found out you were a boy. I saw you as you turned your little face, for one, brief, shining moment toward the sonogram so we could see you. You never did it again, choosing instead to hide from the imaging machine. I think it bothered you. But you gave us one good look, and I’ll never forget it. My son. My beautiful, precious son.