Father’s Day is enjoyed by thousands of new dads every year, but for many their first Father’s Day will be spent anxiously at the side of an incubator.
Dads like Matthew Ramsden, whose wife Sarah gave birth to triplets the day before Father’s Day 2012. An early arrival was expected as Sarah had been in hospital with pre-eclampsia from 26 weeks – although it still caught Matthew by surprise when she gave birth at 31 weeks!
”I’d been planning to do some decorating after visiting Sarah, when all of a sudden an ordinary day was transformed into the big day we’d been preparing for” says Matthew.
When his daughters Josie, Scarlett and Grace were born, Matthew only saw them briefly before they were whisked away to intensive care, while Sarah was rushed to the high-dependency unit. At that moment, Matthew could only stand by and watch as his entire family were dependent on the skills of the doctors and nurses.
When Matthew returned the next day, Father’s Day, he was touched to find a little gift left by a Bliss Volunteer.
”I was surprised to be greeted by a chocolate bar on each of my daughter’s incubators, along with a Father’s Day card. It doesn’t sound much, but I was absolutely thrilled to have received anything at all.”
”Despite all of the other memories the triplets have given us since their birth I will still remember that first Father’s Day with great fondness”
We would like to say happy Father’s Day to every dad celebrating this weekend, and a massive thank you for everything dads do to help Bliss, from fundraising to campaigning, to volunteering their time to help other parents.
If you would like to get involved this Father’s Day you can share your Father’s Day story with us on Facebook or Twitter, write to your MP letting them know why neonatal care is an issue close to your heart, or help us by donating so we can continue our work supporting premature and sick babies and their families.