It’s been a traumatic week. My dear old Dad Joe has been admitted into palliative care. It’s been a week of reflection and sorrow but also love and fondness as I say thank you and good-bye to my Dad.
Very recently Dad told me he’d had a ‘wonderful life’ and how lucky am I to have shared a big part of his amazing 88 years. So many others have had nowhere near that amount of time with their parents and I am grateful for every minute I’ve had with both of my mine.
As I’ve got older, I’ve realised how much I’m like my Dad. He’s taught me so much: to cherish this life and to enjoy every minute of it, to be proud of small achievements and relish the joys of family and friends. He’s taught me to slow down, appreciate the small pleasures like cheese and red wine and was forever telling me to ‘stop and smell the roses’. He’s taught me to listen, to laugh a lot and to love and enjoy our world and take care of it. And as a consequence of Dad’s wisdom, his love of the outdoors and fascination with our natural world, I’ve grown up to be a lot like him with a bent towards the earthy side of life.
Dad and I decided that it was a good time for his old compost solider to come out of retirement and soon it will have a new home in our permaculture garden. And although Dad hasn’t been able to help us build our ordinary garden into something extraordinary over the last few months, he’s been with us every step of the way. He’s listened to the stories and seen the progress through photos, watched as things have taken shape, proudly witnessed his son Uncle Robot patiently place stone by stone, and delighted in the magical transformation of our backyard.
As time passes, Dad will be back in the garden with me. And as I lovingly grin while I turn the handle of his old compost tumbler, he’ll be there guiding me and patiently showing me how to make a new batch of ‘black gold’. He’ll help me understand how to protect and care for our garden and to grow healthy organic real food and as I close my eyes and raise a handful of sweet smelling compost to my nose just as Dad did, I have no doubt that he’ll be there every step of the way as I follow in his footsteps of a ‘wonderful life’. How lucky am I!