Today is my Dad’s birthday. I’m not going to tell you all how old he is because it would be rude so let’s just say he’s a bit older than me and younger than pension age. Numerical age is completely irrelevant anyway because in my mind my Dad has always been 39 and that’s probably where he’ll stay.
My Dad’s Chinese sign is the Earth Ox. Earth signifies nurturing, patience, thoughtfulness, practicality, hard work and stability. Ox implies determination, persistence, defence of what he believes in, being dutiful and reliable, having firm bonds with home and family. His Western star sign is Scorpio and according to the write-up this indicates no fluff or chatter, zeroing in on essential questions, immeasurable curiosity coupled with intense perception. Still waters run deep.
What can I tell you about my Dad? Well, he’s a remarkable man for many reasons. He was brave enough to walk out of a job he detested while he had a wife and two young children to support. He committed himself to retraining as a paramedic – that kind of career switch when you have big commitments takes a lot of nerve. He was a truly devoted husband, friend, companion and soul mate to my Mum in sickness and in health and the years they had together were worth more than any material chattels. He has an unorthodox sense of humour and can find the funny side of almost any situation including bleak ones. He’s quick and intelligent, unafraid to look beneath the surface to see what’s really going on and he asks the questions other people might shy away from. He has an enormous amount of empathy and is deeply caring; his work has consistently involved looking after others less fortunate than himself for as long as I can remember. He’s always put other people’s needs before his own.
What do I love about my Dad? Well, in addition to all of the above here’s something tremendously important. I can talk to my Dad about any subject at any time. He’s never too busy to listen and he always finds the right words – encouragement, praise, solace, inspiration, humour – whatever the situation he helps me through. He understands my foibles and there are quite a lot of those to contend with. He also gives the best hugs in the world, virtual when we can’t see each other and real when we do. In many ways it sounds like I’m describing the perfect Dad and to me that’s what he is.
Here’s wishing you a Happy Birthday Dad, with much love and heartfelt thanks for everything.