Don’t wait until its too late.
There is nothing quite like a near death experience to make you re-evaluate the way you live your life.
On Saturday, my dad was in an accident on his motorbike. Although he’s in intensive care, needs an operation and has suffered multiple broken bones, he’s ok – he’s alive.
My dad came into my life when I was 5 years old. Both me and my younger sister fell in love with him immediately. My sister more-so. He could pick her up and carry her on one shoulder, she absolutely adored him. We were treated as his own children from day one. My dad works off-shore you see, on the oil rigs. So for around half of our life he has been away at work, usually working shifts of 2 weeks on and 2 weeks off.
When he was home, boy did he make up for it.
I have so many fond memories of him coming home from work and me and my sister rummaging through his rig bag to see what treat he had bought us home. One time he came home with those strawberry shortcake dolls. They were dolls that turned inside out to look like a cupcake and they smelt really sweet. They were the “must have toy” at the time. We were ecstatic! Every Sunday morning he used to take a walk to the paper shop and return with a newspaper rolled up, and every time two milky ways would fall out. It was our little Sunday treat when he was home.
I remember the first Easter so vividly too. Mum has always made a huge fuss of every holiday in our home, setting up Easter egg hunts, making Easter bonnets so we ever missed out on anything when dad was away. This one year dad went crazy with the Easter egg buying…I’m not talking a couple of eggs. I’m talking a whole dining table FULL. He even bought us a giant Kinder Egg Easter egg that had a full size toy in it!! You can imagine as kids we were totally in awe.
My dad is awesome, not just because he bought us a ton of chocolate when we were little, but because he has been a strong and dependable role model through our lives. From the second he came into to our family of three (aged 23 himself), he claimed us as his own. He would tell people he had two daughters. We were always his. We never had to fight for his attention because when he was home, family and spending time with “his girls” was what happened. He provided for us, worked his arse off for us, and loved us.
I was never that easy to live with. Hormonal and angry as a teenager, stamping up stairs and slamming doors to name a few. Dad always just took it in his stride. In fact I think I only ever remember one time he raised his voice at me, and to be honest I bloody well deserved it. Dad always knew to let me blow my top and then id come around and apologise later. I never stayed angry for long.
When I was 18 my parents moved to Spain for various reasons (best saved for another blog) I had already set up home, had a full time job and a mortgage so I stayed here. My sister didn’t want to go, so my parents set her up in a flat. My brother was 10 at the time so obviously had no choice but decided he would like to live in Spain too so they sold up and moved.
Me and my mum have always been really close. We speak on the phone all the time, usually twice a week, if not more. I’ve never really been that close to my dad, This is where I have realised I need to make more of an effort. I can make all of the excuses under the sun, “he’s at work on the rig”, “I’ve been busy”, “I spoke to mum and she will have told him anyway” but that’s not good enough.
I’ve thanked god since Saturday when I found out about his accident, that he is ok. that he is still alive. I don’t tell my dad often enough how much I love him, how much he means to me. I don’t tell him how grateful I am that he is my dad and how lucky we are to have him. Feeling sick at the thought of something unspeakable happening and me never having told him ENOUGH how much he means to me has spurred me on. Expect to receive a lot more messages, and a lot more calls. I promise to tell you how much you mean to me so much more often. Thank you dad for being you, being an amazing dad, and an awesome Granddad. I love you.
This ones for you Daddykins
Lots of love your big little girl xxx