Monday, November 12, 2007

Another milestone

This really has been the year for milestone birthdays in the family. This weekend we celebrated another. My other dad, Aubrey, will be 70 this week, and the family got together in East London to celebrate. (He is my other dad, because he was my mom's second husband, but has been a real dad to us.) In fact, as a family, it gets extremely confusing, because all the parents ended up with multiple marriages, and we got attached to the various partners, so that little distinction is made between actual biological parents and step parents. As a result, our kids have more grandparents than most people have cousins!

It was great, as usual we ate till we could barely MOVE, I mean just LOOK at all that food, and that doesn't show the wicked puddings and cake that followed.

But what was special was seeing Aubs, who has overcome all the odds to still be with us, relaxed and happy, surrounded by his new wife, Rene, his children, grand children and even a great grandchild (the wee E).

In the past two years he has suffered two life threatening illnesses, and come through with flying colours. First he had a rare flesh eating bacteria, one of those horror ones you read about that gallop through your body, out of control. It was amazing that he survived, he was in intensive care for weeks, and an enormous section of his hip and buttock area had to be removed, damaging the sciatic nerve. He lost the use of his right leg, as a result, and was told he would be in a wheelchair for the rest of his life. By sheer willpower, stubbornness and courage, he is now not only walking, but doing so without a stick or crutches, despite considerable pain.
He had no sooner got over that hurdle than he was diagnosed with Cancer, and underwent a course of Chemotherapy. He is clear at the moment, so lets lift our glasses......... cheers, here's to a brave, talented and delightful man, and we hope to have him around for many more years!


Old Wom Tigley said...

What a beautiful post this is... there's love oozing from every picture and word... I wish 'Aubs" all the best. But just look at all that love around him.. it is better than any treatment the doctors can give.. loverly post I feel honoured for being able to see and read about this man.

Suzi-k said...

thanks Tom, being part of a loving family is such a blessing... I'll pass your greetings on!

Laura Albertyn said...

Ahh - very jealous!! Miss family get togethers like that and here, here to all you have said about Grandad - he really is so part of our family!!!!! We love him to bits!!

Lilli & Nevada said...

Oh Suzi,
That food looks so good your making me hungry. It is nice to hear that you consider him a second dad, Its hard to find good step parents.
Let me know how that recipe comes out by changing it.

Oswegan said...

Man, that food is making me hungry. It's quite a spread!


imac said...

Lovely post. have enjoyed reading about all love around.

Shirley Goodwin said...

Cheers to Aubrey! and great that you can embrace your extended family - I also have one as both my parents married twice and had 6 children between them.

Sheila said...

I love family celebrations like this one..!
He likes like a fun person, and the little chap jesturing behind him in the photo does too.
I'm sure he will celebrate many more birthdays with you all.