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ROWING: Triggs Hodge column
6:00pm Saturday 2nd November 2013 in Sport
Two weeks ago I bore witness to one of nature’s miracles. An everyday miracle, that was my-once-in-a-lifetime.
My wife gave birth to our first born, a boy, who we named Sebastian.
It astonishes me how something so small and helpless can spark a reaction so deep, so elemental.
Not that I expected anything less, but I had no idea of the power he holds over me.
The feelings he is able, quite effortlessly, to bring out of me leave me in awe. I’m dumbfounded by his helplessness and perhaps empathetically, my own.
I will do anything for this kid. I thought I knew what passion and commitment felt like with my rowing. But we’re talking about parenthood, this is something else completely!
In rowing I control the passion I have for my sport. I own it.
I have to calculate where to steer this drive to make sure I’m getting the most from it. Although my passion comes from my heart, my head plays a huge part.
However with Sebastian, at the moment it’s all heart. It’s made me irrational.
There is no game plan, no coach, and no consistency! This stops my head from taking any role, pretty much winging it!
Despite the excellent preparation we received from the NCT classes and the hours around the delivery at the John Radcliffe Hospital, nothing has been able to prepare us for his influence.
I would like to pay tribute to the doctors, midwives and all the people behind the scenes who helped take care of Eeke and Sebastian. While the building maybe showing its age, the expertise, the care, and attention was as good as I can imagine it gets.
I know that the NHS isn’t always able to deliver this level of satisfaction. However it does happen, and happens frequently, and while I can say it publicly, I’d like to offer some balance to often negative criticism.
But now we’re back home, left to our own devices. The clear heads and clear thinkers have left only the parents, who on the first night would frantically jump out of bed to any inconsequential squeak our little man made.
While we’ve had two weeks now to get used to him, things will start changing again. Not only his own development, but ours. We’re becoming parents, getting savvy!
And while he’s always throwing curve balls, I’m confident we’ll catch them.
What I will not enjoy is going on training camp, which I’m due to do this week.
A two week camp in southern Spain. It’s not only a brutal camp, but that’s pretty normal. It’s leaving this little guy.
I know this happens the world over, but I can’t help but feel like I’m going to miss out on so many things.
And I don’t relish the idea that when I get back home routines will have changed. But that is my choice, I chose to keep rowing, and this is what it means.
So with little Seb on my chest right now, I recall these past few weeks. And while I know there have been trials, I can only remember the good things.
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