April third is the due date that my parents were given when my mother was pregnant with me. To cut a long story short, I arrived early, at 26 weeks, and was born in the first week of January.
I think this date will stick in my mind for the rest of my life, and at this time of year I always find myself feeling thankful, but also wondering how my parents must have felt at the time.
The older I’ve become, the more we’ve talked about it over the years, but every now and then, either my mum or dad will tell me something about my time in the hospital that I didn’t know before. Sometimes it will make me laugh, sometimes it might make me cry, and other times it will leave me surprised.
Even though I was quite young at the time, I still remember my dad telling me that I spent the first three months of my life in hospital. I hadn’t really thought about that very much before then, but I still remember being quite shocked by that nugget of information even though I was just a child.
Another story that gave me a surprise more recently was something my mother told me when we were sitting in a coffee shop at Christmas time last year. We were talking about what it was like when I was born, and she started telling me how excited she and my dad got when they first saw me open my eyes.
This was news to me. It had ever occurred to me that they wouldn’t have been open yet, but apparently they weren’t. Needless to say I was very surprised. I was 22 at the time, and I was only hearing this story for the first time, but I was glad that she was telling me them all the same. That memory was a happy one for her, and I’m sure my dad would tell me that it is for him too if I asked him about it, and I always like to hear the happy stories.
I wonder how many more untold tales there are that I’ll get to hear one day?