Father’s Day! 9 Reasons Why My Dad Is My Superhero…

Dad, me and my son, Maxwell, exploring the Emperor's grounds in Central Vietnam

Happy Father’s Day! This year, I thought I’d pay tribute to my wonderful Dad in words. His strengths, patience, attitude and values are truly incredible – considering the rat bag I’ve been over the years! Here’s 9 reasons why my Dad is my superhero…

1. He’s never reprimanded me.

As a parent myself, I can’t understand how on earth he developed this skill – especially given all the crazy situations I’ve found myself in over the years. Like the time when I was 21 and went on a date to a bar with an English backpacker. He went to the bathroom and 15 minutes later, the bouncers hauled me into a room because my ‘date’ was spotted stealing other patron’s wallets. I was mortified and completely innocent – I’d only just met this guy the previous week! I had to phone Dad so he could take me to the Police Station to give a statement. I was so embarrassed, but not once did Dad reprimand or question me. His support and belief in me was, and still is, incredible.

2. He always walks on the gutter side.

He’ll even trip me up (unintentionally, of course!) to get on the road side to ‘shield me from cars’. I love his old fashioned chivalry, even when it’s a tad outdated. I love that he wants to teach me ballroom dancing when he visits me in Sydney, even when I take him to see a rock band (now that’s a sight!), and that he’s happy to be dragged around the shops for hours with me. He’s the only truck driver I know who wears a button down shirt and smart chinos on the job. He’s the ultimate proud gentleman!

All smiles! My Dad, Rex.

All smiles! My Dad, Rex.

3. He listens to me bang on about the same issues over and over again…

Clearly I have the same ‘talker’ gene as Dad – I don’t shut up! But II have  learned from the best. I’ve had Dad on speaker phone, then gone to make a coffee and come back again and he’s still talking. But when I have an issue, usually the same repeating issue I still haven’t found the answer to, he listens attentively, without judgement, and always offers sound ‘why didn’t I think of that’ advice.

In Singapore, visiting my brother, Adam.

In Singapore, visiting my brother, Adam.

4. He talks in riddles.

Maybe this is where I developed my love of words. My dad knows every colloquial saying invented, and I can’t help but smile when he talks about coming to ‘bullock’s kidney’ (Sydney) to visit the ‘apple of his eye’ (me). But hey, ‘if the Swedes win it, it will be a turn-up (turnip!)’.

5. He’s as honest as a day’s work.

He works incredibly hard – has done his whole life as a farmer, and now as a truck driver – and to say his enthusiasm and passion for anything he undertakes is admirable is a huge understatement. He is loyal, trustworthy and never says a bad word about anyone. Even when I bait him about legitimate wrongs people have done, he’ll just laugh – but never utter a bad word himself.

6. He has super strength and contagious optimism.

My Dad’s had his share of hard knocks and disappointments, but I have never seen his optimism dampened. Even in the worst scenarios he’ll say, “when one door closes, another door opens! There’s something great about to happen, I can feel it!” On the few occasions I have found myself in the pit of self-pity, I call him and am air lifted out to clarity immediately. His solutions-focused, ‘can do’ attitude and optimism is incredibly inspiring.

Cycling through beautiful Vietnam with Dad and Maxwell.

Cycling through beautiful Vietnam with Dad and Maxwell.

7. He’s super proud of his family.

Years ago and fresh out of uni, I applied for a cadetship at a country newspaper and didn’t get the job. I was gutted. Overly enthusiastic and way too confident, I couldn’t understand why. But Dad was adamant there was something better for me just around the corner. Four weeks later I scored my dream gig working on Cosmopolitan. Every time Dad walked into a petrol station or newsagent thereafter, he’d grab a Cosmo and point out my bylines to the checkout chick and say, “This is my daughter! Can you believe the country newspaper didn’t hire her?!” He’s exactly the same with my brothers, sister and my son – telling anyone who’ll listen stories about how clever we are, and how proud he is!

8. He’s super friendly and funny.

In fact, he is the most social person I’ve ever met. You won’t find him lazing on the couch! He paces the room to get out and start talking to people – whether it’s a coffee with my friends, a hit of tennis, doing the fox trot at the nouveau dances or hitting the highway for a road trip around Australia. He dances to the ringtone every time the phone rings and chats to anyone, always cracking a joke – and I still laugh at the same jokes! In fact, I use them myself. Every morning when the barrister asks me if I want sugar with my coffee, I reply, “Sweet enough!” They don’t laugh, but I do!

Checking out the temples in Vietnam.

Checking out the temples in Vietnam.

9. He’s all about the journey rather than the destination…

Ooh I love a goal – there’s nothing more satisfying than reaching the summit. But I’ve learnt to appreciate the journey too, thanks to Dad. He doesn’t care if his footy team wins or loses – it’s about the atmosphere at the match! Watching the game! The thrill of the kick! Some things are innate within us all, and I am definitely goal driven, but I love that Dad has taught me to enjoy the journey, the experience and live in the moment too…

Thanks for being such a wonderful Dad. There are millions of reasons why you are my Superhero! You are truly amazing.

X Franki

What did you learn from your Dad and why is he your superhero? 

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