Dad: 65 years young

With my old man (circa 1990)

Today is the eve of my dad’s birthday and I can’t believe he’s about to turn 65… look out for the Super Gold Card coming your way!

Dad (Johnny) currently works full-time as has been employed by the same company for over thirty years.  He has strong traditionalist attitudes towards work, and appears baffled whenever I seem to change roles and organisations every 2-3 years.

Dad intends to work for a further year (he told me his friends at work want him to keep working), but I sense his yearning to embrace the next chapter of his life with mum.  Work has been a strong part of dad’s livelihood but the years of hard work have taken a toll on him physically.  He would be first to admit that he’s no longer a ‘spring chicken’ and a recent knee and hip replacement would attest to that too.

It’s been satisfying to hear mum and dad talk a lot more about their future plans. Travel, fishing, golfing and spending time with loved ones often pop-up in those conversations.  I am so proud of what my dad has achieved in his career and it made me reflect on the key things I have learnt from him.

  1.  Another day, another dollar.  Yup, this is one of dad’s favourite mantras.  On the surface it seems so regimented, but it reminds me that working and earning a living is a constant and necessary part of life.
  2. Be of service to others.  My dad speaks like a typical Kiwi male, but his actions are supportive at the core.  By showing respect, I will be respected by my peers.
  3. Maintain balance.  Dad works very hard during the week, always making time for his hobbies on the weekends.  I wholeheartedly agree that weekends are precious and an important time to re-energise.
  4. Get on with it.  Dad is not one to mince words and is always clear with instructions.  Having a forward-thinking attitude drives me to complete tasks efficiently with little fuss.
  5. Don’t sweat the small stuff.  Years of experience has taught dad to ‘brush off’ thoughts and issues that are insignificant in the scheme of things.  I struggle with this at times, but dad has definitely inspired me to take heed of this.
  6. Be happy.  Dad always looks forward to the future and constantly talks about the things he wants to do.  Great minds think alike papa!

Thank you for being such an inspiration dad.  You are truly humble and hard working and you deserve to have the most amazing retirement (well, when the time is right for you!).

I can’t wait to celebrate your birthday with you.

Thanks for everything dad!

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