A lot has happened over the past year. I am about to celebrate 50 years on this planet. We had a party last Saturday and it was awesome to be surrounded by my friends and family, my five beautiful children and my new grandson.

Life does seem to turn around. There were many times I thought I would never make it to 50, let alone have all my children gathered around me. But there you go, it does happen! And I have gotta tell ya, having my children around me was the absolute biggest thing that has happened all year.

My 20-year-old son Beau made a beautiful speech in which he stated how proud he was to be my son and how much he loved me, and my 10-year-old son Cassidy, who forgot his speech he had written out and said, “No worries Dad, I’ll wing it”, told everyone in the room how he felt.

I doubt there was a dry eye in the house. I know mine were filled with water. My beautiful children Justin, Shannon and Daniel, and Rhys, my grandson, surrounded me with their love. David, my good friend, also spoke some kind words, and my friend Colin put on a magic show for all of us in his coming out from a long illness.

As I looked around the room, I was extremely proud to be associated with all these people who came together for me. I was an adopted child, and my brother and sister also spoke of past times and how proud they were of me. My two sisters who were adopted to another family also attended, and I was extremely touched to have them celebrating with me. I guess what I am trying to say is:

It doesn’t matter where you are at this moment. Darkness may surround you at present. But there is light at the end of the tunnel, I couldn’t see that light for a long time, but it’s there, believe me, I’ve just proven it… And you know, I never thought I could.

Thank you for all the cards, emails and gifts, but most of all, thank you for being a part of my life and allowing me to share part of yours.

The path I’ve chosen has its share of obstacles…
a broken dream, a wounded heart, a tired spirit.
And yet I’ve been promised that if I walk the path with faith,
my dreams can be restored, my heart will be whole again,
and my spirit will be renewed.
~ Susan E. Fair

My ten-year-old son Cassidy’s speech he left at home:

Ladies and Gentleman,
As you know, it’s my Dad’s 50th. Well, I’ve prepared a speech.
My dad has had 5 children and he has managed to make it to 50.
Some might call that good or maybe unusual, but I call it lucky.

So I wrote this poem:

Roses are red
Violets are blue
I love my Dad
And you should too!

He might not be the best, but deep inside his chest, he has a good heart to fit everyone in there.

I like to spend weekends with my Dad and I have prepared a slide show, but unfortunately, I can’t show it tonight.

I’ll show it to him later.

My favourite things I like to do with him are:

  • Playing remote control cars
  • Walking on the beach
  • Playing board games
  • Talking with the neighbours

But just remember this — my Dad is very special!!!

Dads in Distress Inc would like to thank you for your support and your kindness over the past year, and we want you to know that you have made a difference to our lives and that of our children’s lives.

We wish you a Merry Christmas and a peaceful New Year, maybe one that rejoices in fatherhood more than it has in the past.

We are so often caught up in our destination that we forget to appreciate the journey,
Especially the goodness of the people we meet along the way.

We are pleased we were fortunate enough to meet you.
Thank you for being there when we needed you.

Please take time over this holiday period to remember those who for whatever reason cannot be with their children. If you are fortunate enough to have your children around you, give them a special cuddle from dads who haven’t.

[Photo by Lucas Law on Unsplash]
Published On: December 18th, 20050 CommentsTags: , , ,

About the Author: Tony Miller

Tony Miller was awarded the Order of Australia Medal in the 2010 Queen's Birthday honors list 'For service to the community through the provision of support services for separated families'.

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