When our first child, Sam, was born via Caesarian section, Speedy was waiting right outside the operating room. When Sam was brought out to be taken to the nursery, he followed, never losing sight of her. He watched as she was cleaned up, weighed, measured, wrapped in a blanket and placed in the bassinet inside the nursery. He memorized her every feature including the thick hair that covered her head.
When I could stand up, he brought me to the nursery. We looked through the window and despite the dozens of babies visible, he knew exactly which one Sam was despite the fact that the bassinet had been moved since the he was there a few hours earlier.
It might sound like paranoia to some but he had nightmares about babies getting mixed up in the hospital. Not that I blame him, especially after reading horror stories such as the one about a Malaysian couple who brought home the wrong baby from the hospital 30 years ago.
Teo Ma Leong had always suspected his fifth child was not his own.
The young boy’s dark features led neighbours to whisper that he was the result of an affair.
Meanwhile, Mr Teo’s biological son had always suspected he was not really the child of the Malay Muslim couple who took him home from a hospital in Batu Pahat in southern Malaysia in 1978.
So Zulhaidi Omar left home at 13 because he felt he did not belong…
Then eight years ago one of his sisters spotted him working in a shopping centre.
Convinced he was the spitting image of their father, she brought the rest of her family along.
After staring at one another for a while they found the courage to speak and the truth emerged.
DNA tests subsequently proved that the two men were father and son. [BBC News]
The story is actually more complex as it involves issues about changing names and renouncing religion. For me, those are peripheral issues — offshoots. The real tragedy was the baby mix-up 30 years ago. The mere thought that it can happen to anyone makes me shudder.