Father’s Day is coming up soon and it got me thinking about my Dad and if you don’t mind, I’d like to tell you about him. My Dad had a lovely childhood growing up with his parents, my dear Grandparents (Nanna), who were very loving and I think really taught him the value of family. My Dad has always been fiercely loyal to us and would do anything for us.
My Dad has a great sense of humour. Sometimes it goes over people’s heads, sometimes even mine but then I think he thinks I’m cleverer than I actually am (one of my greatest achievements may just be beating him in a game of Trivial Pursuit and Scrabble). He is really well-read with an interest in everything. His house is wall to wall books. A lot of non-fiction as well as fiction. They don’t have wallpaper in my parents house, they have books.
Along with books his other passions are steam railway, photography, cameras (he collects them and has, well let’s just say he has a lot of them) and his Grandchildren. It is so obvious he adores his three Grandchildren, Moo, Baggy and of course our Samuel. Watching him with the children and how loving and proud he is of his role of Grandad, just makes my heart swell.
My father taught me so much. More than I can tell you. He taught me about honesty, to love and understand and not to judge. He taught me about respect and to celebrate differences. I could introduce anybody to him and he would welcome them into his home, whoever they were, as long as they were a nice decent person, that was all that mattered. He even overlooked when I went out with a boring, Conservative supporting accountant in my late teens.
I wasn’t anywhere near as bright as my sister, let alone my father, but my parents always celebrated my achievements and were so supportive of all the decisions and choices I’ve made.
He wouldn’t call himself a Christian and he only goes to church for weddings, christenings and funerals, but my Dad is more Christian than a lot of church-going Christians I’ve met. He has a heart of pure gold.
I grew up confidently knowing that I could be anyone, I could be with anyone and as long as they were a good person, my father (and my mother) would welcome them into their home without a second thought. That is an amazing feeling you know, knowing that.
While he does drive my sister and I bonkers quite often, my Dad along with my Mum mean the world to me. We are so very lucky to have them both.
My Dad was good fun when we were kids. An early memory I have (prompted by photos) is of him dressing up as a clown for our school fayres. He was always involved with raising money for our school and would often man the ‘Bash the Rat’ stall (no real rats were harmed). And then there was his Roland Rat impression which was legendary!
My parents, but especially my Dad, taught me to be me. To be independent and stand on my own two feet. He introduced me to music like Blondie, Fleetwood Mac, The Beatles and The Rolling Stones, for which I will always be grateful.
My father is a left-wing, old Labour supporter. The only people I probably hear him criticise are Conservative politicians (oh and BMW drivers – sorry!). And the Royal Family. Oh yes. Despite knowing so much about the history of the Royal Family, he isn’t pro-monarchy. I grew up hearing him say ‘off with their heads’ whenever a Royal was on the television.
Over the years I watched him do so much for his family. Not just us, but for his Mum and his brother. My Uncle died suddenly about 10 years ago and although the brothers weren’t particularly close, it broke my father’s heart. I went with him to the funeral directors to plan the funeral and sort out all the paperwork and I was so proud to see how desperate he was to do everything right for his brother. My Uncle wasn’t an angel and never telling his family, including his own brother, that he had a son who was only a couple of years younger than me, was hard for us all to take. But despite only briefly knowing his teenage nephew, my dear father did everything he could for my ‘new’ cousin and made sure he was well provided for.
I know I get my logical and sensible side from him. Being good at organising, planning and problem solving all comes from him. Although unfortunately I didn’t inherit his intellect but did inherit his eczema and funny feet.
Sometimes life tests you. Sometimes it forces you to declare what is important to you and who/what you would be prepared to fight for. My father has continued again and again to show us, to prove to us, how much he loves us.
I know there will be some people who wont have their Dads here to celebrate Fathers Day and that makes me even more grateful for what I have. And for who I have.
I love you Dad. x
(Do meet my Mum too)