Luke Rocca, Grade 6, St Oliver Plunketts School
“Dad can you come and kick the footy with me?”
“Dad can ya help me with my project?”
“Dad I hope you will like your Fathers day present!”
“You know dad I love you!”
Fathers are for supporting, caring, and helping children throughout their whole life. Thankfully most Dad’s live up to this, but all children can’t and don’t experience ‘kick to kick,’ buying a fathers day present or even going to a father and son day at school. Many children are left to go on with their lives without spending quality time with their dad for many reasons, in my case, my Dad dying.
Dad was born in 1956 and died in 2006 at the age of 49. He was a teacher, triathlalete, a caring friend and a dad- the thing he was most proud of. Five years before his death, he was diagnosed with cancer, but don’t think for one second the last five years of his life were the worst. Sure, dad could have been angry and frustrated at the fact that he never drank alcohol, never smoked, ran triathlons and ate healthy food but he had cancer. Still dad lived life normally and he still was happy; now that’s how you should live life with cancer.
One of the hardest things in my life now is something so simple but can still bring me to tears, the words dad or father. ‘Buy a Father’s day present’ or ‘me and dad went fishing on the weekend and it was fun…’ In my everyday conversations I listen to friends boasting about their dads and watch Father’s day adds. The hardest part of listening to all of this is what to do once I’ve digested the thought that my Dad’s not here. Should I cop it on the chin and feel sorry for myself or should I think about all the Fathers days and the quality time I spent with dad? (I’m going for the last option).
I’ve heard many stories familiar to mine however some people who have experienced grief stay at home and never go places where their loved one used to go and worst still they don’t socialise anymore. I know how hard it is but I also know my dad would want me to ‘push on’ and enjoy myself.
A few of my friends questioned my choice of writing a piece like this. Why would I write something sad and soppy? But my aim isn’t to write a sad story, but to express my feelings which I now realise is very comforting. I love my dad and he loved me, and although I’d do anything to for him to come back, his death has made me realise you can’t plan your life, you cant say what you will be doing in twenty years, you cant even say what you will do tomorrow, because life is full of surprises and how you deal with the surprise is what matters!