Following a near-death experience, a single man in a wheelchair, without a partner, had a desire to have children. His wish was unexpectedly granted in a manner he had never imagined.
In 2005, Terry Pavlou’s life was drastically altered when he experienced a harrowing accident while working on a house renovation project with his father and brothers.
As a 29-year-old man, he never envisioned spending his future confined to a wheelchair, and he could not have foreseen the profound impact that one unforeseen event would have on his life.
Despite being wheelchair-bound and unsuccessful in his search for a partner, Pavlou remained resolute in his desire to become a father. He was aware that it might take years before he could find a woman to share his parental responsibilities with, but he was determined to have children.
Against all odds, Pavlou’s dream was eventually realized when he embraced his twin babies for the first time. At the age of 40, he had become a single father to two children, an outcome that he had once thought was unattainable.
The Day Everything Changed
On July 12, 2005, Pavlou, a skilled cabinet maker, went to work not realizing that it would be the final time he would stand on his own two feet. While working on a property in Adelaide, Australia, he was suddenly trapped beneath a substantial heap of debris.
During the renovation, one of the walls of the house gave way, causing the 29-year-old Pavlou to become trapped beneath the fallen debris. At the time, he was unaware that the accident had caused permanent harm to his body. Reflecting on the incident, Pavlou remembered:
“When I was buried, I couldn’t breathe because my lungs were ruptured.”
Pavlou likened his injury to being hit by a baseball bat, but the medical professionals who attended to him at the hospital remarked that he “should have been dead after ten minutes.”
Pavlou’s family members managed to extricate him from the rubble prior to the arrival of emergency responders. They recognized that the incident had resulted in damage to Pavlou’s spinal cord, but they did not disclose this to him. It wasn’t until he regained consciousness in his hospital room that he learned he had lost the ability to walk.
Pavlou acknowledged that the accident had “altered everything.” Prior to the incident, he had been poised to launch a business, seek out a life partner, and start a family. However, destiny had a different path in store for him.
In addition to the loss of his mobility, Pavlou’s accident resulted in a rupture of his aorta, the largest artery in the body. This greatly reduced his likelihood of survival.
Life after the Accident
Following the accident, Pavlou was hospitalized for six months, during which time he received treatment for his various injuries. During this period, he experienced a range of emotions, struggling to come to terms with the reality that he could no longer walk.
After being deemed fit for rehabilitation, Pavlou left the hospital with a renewed sense of purpose. Upon the recommendation of a coach, he ventured into sports, giving it his best shot as part of his recovery process.
During his rehabilitation period, Pavlou became convinced that he wanted to become a father. Despite his desire for children, he was not enthusiastic about the prospect of seeking out a partner specifically for that purpose. He did not want to “wait to find love.”
Determined to realize his dream of starting a family, Pavlou was willing to do whatever it took. He yearned to cradle his babies in his arms and proudly proclaim himself their father, unaware that the solution to his quandary was close at hand.
Following a breakup and a period of reflection during his rehabilitation, Pavlou opted to become a single father via surrogacy. However, there was still a long and arduous journey ahead of him before he could embrace his newborns.
As Pavlou delved into the world of surrogacy, he chanced upon an Adelaide-based group that informed him about a clinic in Thailand. Following his intuition, Pavlou reached out to the clinic and, a few months later, found himself thousands of miles away from home.
The IVF procedure commenced, and a few weeks later, the clinic delivered the good news: two embryos had successfully formed, and a woman had agreed to serve as the surrogate mother. Pavlou reminisced:
“I was so happy, excited at the possibility of not one child but to be blessed with twins. [sic]”
With his parents by his side, Pavlou eagerly awaited the arrival of his twins. The 36-week wait seemed never-ending, but finally, the moment arrived when he could hold his children for the very first time.
On March 27, 2015, Pavlou’s dream of becoming a father of twins at the age of 40 finally came true. Overjoyed, he looked forward to spending the rest of his life raising his babies. He expressed his feelings, saying:
“I didn’t believe in love at first sight until I met these guys here.”
A Proud Father of Twins
Pavlou cherishes the moments he spends with his children, Angel and Nicos. Despite his disability, he finds ways to care for them, and he feels that they have adjusted well to his physical limitations.
The most heartwarming moment for Pavlou was when he first heard his children call him “Daddy.” It was a dream come true for him to become a father.
Now at the age of 8, the twins have grown into beautiful children who have been helping around the house since they were four. They understand their father’s physical limitations and are supportive of him.
Pavlou recently shared a photo of his twins on their first day of school and mentioned that they have also purchased a farm, which they enjoy spending time on.
Although the twins have fun playing with their dad at home, which includes jumping on beds and running around the house, their time together also involves learning. Pavlou revealed how his children have gained new perspectives from seeing him in a wheelchair:
“Being a dad in a wheelchair has taught my children to be more independent for their age and to be more caring, I think.”
Pavlou has learned a lot about parenting while raising his twins despite his physical limitations. When asked to give parenting advice, he said that all children need is love, care, and attention.
Pavlou acknowledged that his inability to participate in physical activities with his children doesn’t diminish the strength of their bond. He believes that their relationship thrives on the love and emotional connection they share.