Nathan and Emma met four years ago through a dating site and have been together ever since. This is their first child.
Becoming a new parent comes with many emotional ups and downs, and one of the best moments comes when you see the scan of your child for the first time. However, not everyone is lucky enough to have that experience. People who are visually impaired miss out on this beautiful and exciting part of starting a family. However, one dad-to-be in this same situation was helped by his friends so he too could experience this just as everyone else.
Nathan Edge, 26, was born with sight but by the time he turned six, he lost 80% of his vision, according to Metro. The British man, who lives in Mansfield town centre, UK, lost his sight overnight in 2014 at the age of 19 following multiple bleeds in both of his eyes, as per Chad. He uses a guide dog, Abby, to function but even a guide dog wasn't able to help him see his baby's scan.
He met his partner, Emma Fotheringham, through a dating site four years ago and they are expecting a baby boy in May. He said that until the time when he could hear his child's heartbeat, he was not able to see how the child was growing. "I've got no sight at all until it came to the 16-week scan where we were able to listen to the heartbeat, I've not been able to get the visual part out of the scans," Nathan said.
Dad-to-be @NathanEdge94 can build a picture of his baby thanks to this gorgeous embroidery - amazing work by @guidedogs volunteer puppy walker Deb Fisher! 💙https://t.co/H2FOf2l4fC— Guide Dogs Press (@GuideDogsPress) December 15, 2020
"It has still been great to be there but obviously I've never been able to physically see the scan so it is hard. It's the bit a lot of people look forward to when you're becoming a parent, seeing those sort of things so I was a little bit sad that I couldn't see those but I knew that was going to be the case and I was expecting it," he added.
However, a kind friend came to his aid. Emma said that Deb Fisher, who is a local dog walker for guide dogs, dropped her a message with a plan to help Nathan, who has played on England’s blind football team. Deb and Nathan met in 2014 and they had stayed in touch.
"She said she was so happy for us both but sad that Nathan was unable to see our baby grow on our scan photos. She said she had never embroidered before but would love to try and embroider all of our scans for Nathan to enable us to experience the joy of our baby boy growing together. I couldn’t believe someone could be so kind and thoughtful and knew it would be something very special for Nathan," Emma told Metro.
Emma was able to keep it all under wraps and wanted to surprise Nathan. Deb spent weeks secretly hand-embroidering the baby scan with multiple threads of different variants of thickness to create a 3-D, tactile version of the picture. When five-months pregnant Emma handed Nathan the handiwork on December 10 as a gift, the dad-to-be was overcome with emotions.
How incredible is this 😍— Nathan Edge (@NathanEdge94) December 10, 2020
Received this amazing surprise today... it’s an embroided tactile version of our 12 week baby scan, so for the first time as a blind dad to be, I’m able to build a picture of our baby scan through touch ❤️
Can’t describe how amazing this is 😍 pic.twitter.com/3Qm01MlzhS
"Emma had been planning it for a few weeks. But she was able to not let me find out about it until it was finished. I was quite emotional, it took me a few minutes to work it out. But normal baby scans are quite difficult to work out when you can see them," he said, adding, "It is a little bit scary, but I am definitely excited."
He called the surprise "amazing," as per Chad. "It has got to be one of the most thoughtful gifts I have ever received to be honest," the dad-to-be added. "We had actually been looking to see if anything like that was even possible and I think there are some 3-D scans out there which you can have done to be tactile but they are obviously very expensive, so it wasn't something we had looked into hugely," he added.