I used to watch shows where the father missed the birth of their child and thought that would never be me. That if I had a child I would most certainly be there when they were born. I wasn’t.
I always regretted that, memories of standing at the door watching my wife leave to go to hospital have always been too raw. Recently they replayed, day after day. This was a result of the most recent doctor’s appointment. I realised that I haven’t had any treatment for my spine. Sixteen years of “You need to push through the pain, try harder”. I tried and I pushed, and to be honest I’m scared that I fought against the pain too much, because it pushes back often now. It has done for years, the last few winters have been intense. A pain I would not wish on anyone.
I thought I was fighting against the pain because there wasn’t any other options. In fact I have a letter from my doctor dated a few years ago that states that I have exhausted all possible treatment options. That from this point forward pain management was the only option. Now I don’t know what to think. I would like to think I would have been at her birth, that somehow I would have found a way with the support of my doctor’s. I thought staying at home was being a good father because I wanted to be fit to help when Jennie and Megan got home.
The thing I remember most about the day when Megan was born was thinking if my wife died in childbirth, I wouldn’t forgive myself for not being there. It was important to me to be the kind of father that was always there for his child. However, I feel upset still, 11 years on that I couldn’t be.
All our best and love
Ross Fraser and Jeni Dern
Words – Ross A Fraser
Design App –