Everything was happening so fast, in a matter of minutes consent forms had been signed and I was being wheeled to the theatre. Chinedu wasn’t allowed to follow me in,he stood outside waving at me like he was saying his last goodbye.
I kept telling myself that everything was going to be fine, I was trying to be strong, I reminded myself that I needed to be strong for my friends, I needed to be strong for Chinedu and most importantly, I needed to be strong for the twins.
I was told to sit down on the operating table and bend my back while hugging a pillow so that the anesthetist could administer spinal anasthesia, which would make me numb from the waist down so I wouldn’t feel anything during the surgery but I’d be awake and be aware of everything that was happening around me.
After all the necessary preparations and protocols were observed, the surgery was commenced, I waited anxiously for the surgeons to bring my babies out. We were only few seconds into the surgery but I felt like I had been lying on the operating table forever, I tried to study the faces of the theatre staff around, I figured that I would sense if there was any trouble from the expressions on their faces during the surgery, but their faces remained expressionless, they went about their activities like it was no big deal, which I knew it wasn’t anyway since I had helped in bringing hundreds of babies successfully to the world via C-sections in the past. My mind kept focusing on the 1 in 1000 unsuccessful ones instead for some funny reason.
The anesthetist was a very cheerful lady in her 40s, she did her best to crack jokes and keep up a conversation with me so I could take my mind off the surgery but it wasn’t working; I wanted to hear every single thing the surgeons said to themselves so half of the time, I didn’t even listen to what she said. As much as I knew she was only trying to be nice, I just wished she’d leave me alone and concentrate on her machines, read a book or count her toes if she didn’t find anything else to keep her busy, I didn’t really care what she did with herself as long as she wasn’t talking to me. I know that might have seemed mean but the only sound I wanted to hear at that time was my babies crying.
Finally, at exactly 1.45 am, I heard the cry of my first baby, the midwife announced that it was a girl,I was still feeling overwhelmed would joy when I heard the cry of my second bundle of joy two minutes later, this time it was a bouncing baby boy.
After receiving the babies, the midwives brought them closer for me to confirm their sexes. I had refused to ask for the sex of my babies on purpose when I did my last scan because I had wanted it to be a surprise.
I had always imagined how it would be when I finally saw the babies that had been growing in my belly for weeks face to face but nothing I had ever imagined could compare to the joy I felt when I finally set my eyes on them; it’s a feeling I still find difficult to explain till now.
“Congrats” the talkative anesthetist said to me smiling when I was done confirming their sexes, “I’m sure their father will be so happy when he sees them; the boy looks so much like him” she added. I became lost when I heard those words, I could almost swear on my life that she’d never met Dr. Tolu before and even if she had, she definitely didn’t know he was the father of my kids; Dr. Tolu himself had no idea he was expecting a set of twins. So which father was she referring to? Our Heavenly Father?
I wanted to give one of the many sarcastic replies I had stored up in my box of sarcasm but I decided to let it slide, I gave a smile and thanked her instead. I knew she must’ve been referring to Chinedu because she probably assumed he was my husband but I’m pretty sure there was no resemblance whatsoever between he and my son, as much as I wished there was.
About an hour later, the surgery was over and I was wheeled to the recovery room to be monitored for a few hours, the spinal anesthesia hadn’t worn off and I still couldn’t feel my legs or lift them. Visitors weren’t allowed in so I had some time to rest and get some sleep after my unexpectedly eventful day.
I was still a little tired after I was transferred to one of the private rooms in the maternity wards later on. I closed my eyes for a few seconds while I waited for the midwives to bring in my twins, I didn’t realise when I drifted off to sleep again until I was woken up by a kiss on my forehead, I looked up to see Chinedu, “congrats babe” he said giving me the most amazing smile, “our twins are so adorable”, he added stroking my forehead with his fingers, “OUR twins?” I repeated looking confused, I wanted to be sure I heard right. “Yes our twins” he affirmed, “I’ve made up my mind to be a father to them, I’ll care for them like they are mine and give them the finest things life has to offer.”
When he finished his sentence, I began to think I had overslept and woken up in December, I took a quick look around just to be sure but there were no Christmas decorations in sight, “what’s today’s date?” I asked looking confused, “it’s the 28th of November” Chinedu replied laughing, I could tell he was obviously amused by my reaction to what he said, “it was your birthday yesterday, remember?” he added, “so it isn’t Christmas yet?” I asked again, “no silly! Christmas is almost a whole month away” he replied playfully pulling my nose, “if it isn’t Christmas yet and my birthday was yesterday then why are you being so nice to me today?” I asked.
He immediately burst out laughing then paused for a while giving me this long penetrating look that made it seem like he could see right through me while I tried to make sense of what he said.
“Are you asking to be the father of my twins?” I questioned further, “no I’m not asking to be their father” he said, “I’m telling you I’ll be their father”
“You don’t have to….” I began to say, but he didn’t let me finish, “shhh” he said placing his finger across my lips to shut me up, “I know I don’t have to but I want to, the moment I saw you the other day at the mall, I knew I wanted you in my life but I never really realised I still loved you until you were taken into the theatre and I thought I would lose you.”
I opened my mouth to speak but I couldn’t find the words to say, the love and care he had showered on me in the short time we had reunited was overwhelming, I didn’t even notice that tears had started rolling down my face till he started wiping them away. “Tess” he said, wiping my tears before they rolled down my cheek, “the only way I can prove my love to you is by loving your babies like they’re mine, I’m willing to spend the rest of my life making you smile if only you will let me.”
“Thank you” was all I managed to say as I leaned forward to hug him, I was still finding it difficult to believe I wasn’t dreaming….