Saturday, 14 May 2011

I love you Dad

Grumpy and Cate.
With Mother’s Day a distant memory, I feel the need to share the love with my dad.

My parents live a couple of hours away on a farm and dad rarely ventures to the big smoke. He does come down on occasion and loves visiting his grandchildren, but all of a sudden he will just get up and announce that it is time to go. My sister and I both live within half an hour of each other so he is forced to come down to see us 2 out of every three Christmas’ but insists that Easter it spent up there with him and mum.

My dad was a truck driver so wasn’t around much whilst I was growing up. By the time he moved to where he is now, I moved to the city and my sister was off to boarding school. All of a sudden he was home and we weren’t. Now he will tell anyone who will listen that he regrets not being around to watch us grow up. But as they say, hindsight is a beautiful thing! Thankfully I think this is what makes him such a wonderful grandfather. My children adore him and I watch in awe sometimes at the lengths he will go for them. I am often shocked at the amount of power our children have over him. He is a softer, more patient person than the person we saw in our childhood.

Lunchtime yesterday my mum rang to tell me that she was at the hospital with my dad. He had woken up feeling unwell and had asked her to bring him to the city (a three hour drive) to see a doctor. He was experiencing shortness of breath, sweating and chest pains. They had gotten half way, when they decided she should stop at the closest hospital.

After a day of anxiety, fear and little communication, dad was diagnosed with Supraventricular Tachycardia - according to Wikipedia, can be caused by stress or emotion. Great, thanks to a very vague mother, something my sister and I were heading towards ourselves!! Now, don’t misinterpret my sarcasm. Mum did exactly what I did with my children - failed to give them the whole truth and show how afraid I was. But, my children are babies and don’t understand, Tami and I are adults! Today I can see that she realised she was too far away to control our emotions.

Unfortunately, today is just another day for him. He arrived home this morning and went straight back to work like nothing had happened - but something did. I was made to think about his mortality. How would I explain it to my children? How do I get out of bed and be a mother to my children when I am a daughter to him? I want this to not just be another day for me. I want him to know that he is a great father. He will not be remembered for his absence, but for the amazing times we spent together. I have a million things that I could say and thank him for, but sometimes “I love you” says everything you ever wanted to say, and promises all the things you want it to, all at once.

I love you Dad.

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