‘Dear Dad’ | Bryana Thomas

It’s never too late to put pen to paper…


‘Dear Dad’

Bryana Thomas

The Athlete’s Footnote Award


 

Dear Dad,

I am so sorry that it has been so long since my last letter, I have just been so caught up with my competitions. I really would have loved for you to come and see me compete in my last underwater race. It was a 5km run along the bottom of the ocean just outside of Byron Bay. I didn’t win, but it was still such a good feeling to pass that finish line. The technology they have these days is amazing, they even filmed the whole thing underwater, can you believe that?

I am also sorry that it took me this long to come home to visit. Hendrix seems so lost now. He just keeps sniffing around the lounge and sleeping most of the day in your old armchair. It must smell like you. Whenever he hears the creak of the porch steps he runs to the door with his little tail wagging, I assume he is hoping to see you. But unfortunately it is usually just the neighbours dropping off lasagnes and homemade pies.

I was cleaning out your bedside table and found an envelope with a photo of you and me when I was just a little girl. I was so surprised to find Mum’s wedding ring inside it too. Were you thinking of sending these to me? I would have loved that.

I hope you don’t mind but I am wearing the ring, it is a perfect fit. I have also put the photo in a frame on the windowsill. So we can both watch the sunset together like we did when I was young. I realised that photo that was our last one together and that was almost 15 years ago.

I really should have visited more. Especially after Mum died. I was selfish and had no idea how to handle her loss, or your grief. I now realise how much more important family is than chasing a career in such a silly sport, even though you encouraged me to follow my dreams. I really do thank you for that.

I have decided to stay here, in this old house. It has too many memories to just sell it. Besides I think Hendrix and I will become great friends, after all we have one major thing in common, our love for you. He loves this place too. I am going to start taking him to the beach (but don’t worry we will stay above the water).

I wish I could have written this letter to you sooner, or even got to say goodbye to you. I know you can’t read this, but I feel like on some level you are watching over my shoulder whilst I am typing it. Send my love to Mum.

Love always and forever,

Amelia xoxo

 

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