This weekend was Father’s Day in Australia. Days like these always make me reflect on what I have and it is nice to be reminded of how lucky I am to have a Dad like mine. Other people speak of their fathers and often their stories are of distance and loss. I feel very fortunate that not only is my Dad still around, he’s a pretty top fella at that.
For most of our growing up years, Mum was the one who worked while Dad was studying at university. For my sister and me, it meant that Dad was around a lot and, reflecting back at my childhood, I feel very privileged that I was able to have these years with him. Not only was he around, but he made such an effort to have quality time with us. In the school holidays we experimented with making paper and crab apple jelly. We collected rocks from the river and painted them together. I loved spending time with him in the shed while he made all kinds of things out of wood and patiently explained how things should go together. I still remember what the “PVA” in PVA glue stands for!
Unfortunately, a lot of people can’t say their Dad’s have always been loving, encouraging and supportive. But I can. I will always remember when Dad printed my first ever poem onto the paper we made. The poem was terrible and I was mortified, but the sentiment has stuck with me and inspired me to write in adulthood. He sat through more violin performances than it is reasonable to put a person through and I can’t remember a hockey match I played without Dad cheering along on the sidelines, despite the frost. When he knew I was having the worst day at work, Dad showed up just to give me a hug. Dad was always the one to give me a stern but supportive word when I had done the wrong thing as a teen and when I grew up and developed a few extra brain cells, I have always known he is proud of me.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who says we don’t tell each other enough how much we appreciate them, but I like to think Dad will always know how much he means to me, even when times are tough and I can’t afford to buy him a present to prove it to him! The truth is, if he didn’t know this already, I know he does now because he has read every single blog post I have written, so I know he will read this one too.