The past four months have been a whirlwind.
My son came into the world on 4th January 2013 at exactly 9pm. Despite all my efforts to the contrary, I was two weeks overdue and so best laid plans went out the window. Instead of low lights, water, and a mix tape welcoming his arrival, there was fluorescent lighting, beeping monitors, and doctors trying to order me around. I did everything I could to keep control, and after a five hour labour and a lot of gas and air, he arrived, screaming his little lungs out. I don’t think I will ever forget the words, “Jodes, it’s a boy” for as long as I live. Still high as a kite, all I could do was repeat the words “I have a son” over and over again. That moment of birth was unreal, unrelenting, and the most amazing moment of my life.
Since that winter’s day in Tunbridge Wells, I have been getting to know my boy. His smiles began on day 4 and have only got broader, his hair has got longer, thinner and lighter, and he loves to hear me squawk songs from Gene Kelly musicals. Looking back through these pictures, I find it incredible how fast he has changed. Everybody tells you how quickly it goes, but nothing prepared me for the speed with which it happens. I am trying to take it in, trying to take a few minutes in between the madness to just sit him on my knee and hug him tight. This year I turn thirty, and as I leave youth behind, I am so excited to see another generation beginning behind me.
Roman, one day you’ll read these words. Whatever happens between now and then, know that I will love you forever. I will do my best to bring you up to be a good man; one who values kindness above everything else. Be a loving person, do what you’re good at, always say “thank you”. Part of me wants to wrap you up tight and keep you safe, but I know those little knocks along the way are what will make you that man.
I can’t wait to watch him grow.