I have never met my biological father, and to tell you the truth it never worried me either. My Mum told me from a young age all about him, and how they met and how they couldn’t be together for social reasons.
So even though I have no Father listed on my birth certificate, I guess because my Mum was so open and up front with me from a young age about him, and because I was always so loved and well cared for, I never felt like I was missing out on anything.
I did have Father figures in my life. When I was in grade three my Mum married, and for a while there I had a father figure in my life, but he was never really a Dad, as such. I learnt this the hard way when my Mum and he divorced and he told my Mum he wouldn’t be paying any child support for me, because I wasn’t his child. And whilst now in my 40’s (ok I JUST turned 40) I totally get why he wouldn’t, at the time I was a teenager and it wasn’t about the money, it was more to do with the fact he didn’t want to acknowledge me as being a part of his family.
Not long after that, my relationship with him deteriorated and I even changed my surname back to my mothers maiden name at school. If he didn’t want me that was fine, I didn’t want his name then either.
I wasn’t angry with him really, I found I quickly moved on and again my Mum and sisters always made me feel loved and wanted. So I never really felt alone or as though something was missing in my life.
As I grew older, I still didn’t feel a longing for a Dad. Mum filled those shoes for me, even walking me down the aisle when I got married. But whilst I didn’t NEED a Dad, I was curious as to whom my biological father was. Mum always told me I was so much like him. I was tall like him (my Mum is quite short), I looked like him (he and I are both fair and freckly, where as my Mum is from Aboriginal heritage and has gorgeous olive skin) and my Mum also told me we had a similar nature.
My desire to meet my biological Father was more out of curiosity, than a longing for a Dad.
This curiosity used to see me checking the flight manifest when I was a flight attendant, before I handed it over to the captain. My biological Dad’s surname is not common so I knew it would stand out if I saw it.
I never did.
When I turned 36 (well around that time) I asked my Uncle, who was a detective, to find my natural father for me. A week later he called me to tell me he had found him. My heart stopped in that moment. What next?
My natural father agreed to talk to me on the phone, as he lived in a different State. So one day I lit a candle, invited my angels in to support me and called him. He was polite, friendly and chatty, and told me about my family history. He even sent me a photo of himself.
Not long into the conversation my bubble was burst, when I asked him “Do you ever think of me, or wonder about me, or think about meeting me?”
“No” he replied without even skipping a beat.
“Thank you for your time, it has been so nice to put this piece of the puzzle into place” I said, and hung up. That was the end of that.
I closed the door on that chapter and went on with life. After all I was so very lucky to have people in my life that loved me. My Father hadn’t been in my life for 36 years, so clearly I didn’t need him now. Right?
Fast forward to today. Actually let’s back it up to about 18months ago when I met Tony, my now business partner and the man that makes the majority of the products we sell.
When Tony and I met, we were both a little lost. We were both missing something we never knew we needed until it entered our lives. Each other.
Tony, a 65 year old qualified builder/carpenter, taught me everything he knew (and still does teach me) about woodworking.
Tony bought me my first scroll saw. (I remember the day I turned up to his house, our workshop, and he said “Today I am going to buy you your very own scroll saw”) Pretty sure I choked up a little in that moment.
Tony and his wife Di, and their beautiful family, had my family over for a Christmas BBQ last year and we played backyard cricket. Just like family’s do at Christmas.
Tony believed in me and my crazy dreams and still does. Even he dreams big now! I think I am rubbing off on him.
Tony encouraged me and supported me with Bear and Sparrow and on those days I wanted to quit, because it all seemed too hard, Tony was the wise one, there to listen and then tell me, “You’ve got this Lisa”
Tony tells really bad Dad jokes and thinks it is hilarious to scare me with a fake rubber snake when I am working in the workshop. Bloody hell I screamed so loud at the sight of that ridiculous snake. Yes, I have a snake phobia.
Tony was the one I called to ask about a new car my husband and I were going to buy. He helped us research cars and good deals. Just like a Dad does.
Tony told me (ok I am freaking crying writing this now) “ You are like a daughter to me Lisa, and to see you succeed in Bear and Sparrow would mean the world to me.”
Tony is the Dad that I never knew I needed.
I just wanted you all to know that all the products we make and send to you, are made with so much love, and from one of the most dedicated Father/Daughter teams you will ever find.
Bear and Sparrow proudly Australian made, designed and owned.
A FAMILY business established in 2015.
Photo Credit: Emma Jade Photography