MY DAD, AND WHY HE'S MY HERO

  1. This is my Dad and I. We were out to dinner for my 22nd birthday.
    This is my favourite photo of us and it takes pride of place in my bedroom. I can look at this photo and feel that embrace. It's magical.
  2. It was 3 months before he died.
  3. My Dad, like everything in his life, tenaciously fought a brain tumor for 8 years.
  4. Eight years is a long time to have your brain messed with. Crazy emotions, highs + lows, behavioral changes, age-memory regression, seizures, just to name a few of the demons.
    He also had chest catheters, surgical procedures, radiation and scan upon scan upon scan to wade through. I respect that this is a common illness and 8 years pales in comparison to other brain illnesses and injuries. 🙏🏼
  5. Patiently (for the most part), he read books on books to understand his brain, understand the mind within and if there was a way to beat it.
    His annotated Deepak books are my only tangible link to his study, his healing. They are my prized possessions.
  6. This alone, could totally make this man my hero.
  7. When I was very young, my dad was a steel fabricator (because it was a stable job + put pasta on the table), but it was not his dream.
  8. He was so good at his job he secured national projects in this trade.
  9. These jobs partly funded investments in property. He was a big picture guy. He wasn't ok with mediocrity. He always wanted more.
    One day he came home and told mum the sum of money that he loaned from the bank (something like $1.5m in today's currency!). My mum was unimpressed, as in nearly divorced him. I'm glad she didn't!
  10. He was a risk taker. I loved that about him. I'm therefore naturally drawn to (calculated) risk takers.
    Psychoanalyze that!!
  11. He now ran two businesses. He worked long hours and was a stern father, but I always felt a strong admiration and love for him deep down.
    On the surface I feared him because he was quite a harsh disciplinarian and I was naughty! Yet, even at that age, my emotional perception was strong. I loved him.
  12. He was a total rockstar of a human: he was the life of the party, danced around the house, he'd grope my mum in the kitchen, he did not judge and was inclusive. He embraced his body and was unapologetic about bouts of nudity!
    He honestly was hilarious! I miss that smile. That dance he did. That laugh. That raucous craziness!
  13. He was outdoorsy; he was an ocean guy, he would dive-snorkel-scuba, he'd hike.. he traveled the world.. he had curiosity in his heart and he was by no means perfect.
  14. He contracted projects with mining companies to build their steel refinery plants. He thought, this isn't hard. I could do this.
  15. Business number three was born. He was now a property investing, steel fabricating, mining magnate!
  16. He operated several (small ?) gold mining sites, all off his own back. He was self-taught, and employed others to teach him more. He was very successful.
  17. One devastating night, he had a grand mal seizure and life changed.
  18. Not having him 'walk me down the aisle' pales (now) in comparison to not being able to ask my hero the big questions about life. About him, to learn more about me.
    If you have the opportunity to ask your parents these things, do it. Don't think about what they might think or, that they won't 'get you' etc, just pony up and ask. You don't get that back and other people's opinions (i.e., family) are biased.
  19. I feel that he and I are so similar in many ways and his guidance now, is just what I miss the most.
    I just want to have one long afternoon of beers, conversation and laughter.
  20. My hero.
  21. My Dad.
  22. 💙+🌊