My Daughter

Having my daughter with me on the Pasta advert was great and I was proud of the way that she handled herself, especially on the second morning at 3.30am, when I know she was dog tired and did not really want to go. I told Gabby that she had two choices.

1)Go back to sleep
2)Get up and complete what she had started

Gabby got up and decided to complete what she had started, this trait I believe she gets from her mom and I and we in turn got from our parents . Watching Gabby over the last couple of days made me realize how fast our children grow up and before we know it they will be leaving home. This in turn got me to thinking about how Gabby came in to our lives and changed it for the better and it’s a story I would like to share with you.

I never ever thought that I would become a dad, my wife and I for whatever reason where unable to conceive. Either my little Ryk Neethlings were unable to read a map and swim in the right direction or my wife’s eggs just decided that they where far to ugly and would not go out on a date with them. After a number of failed artificial insemination procedures we thought that we would never have a child. While we may have thought that, the man upstairs had other plans and through a chance meeting with a lady who assisted couples to adopt. To cut a long story short, probably a year after that meeting we received a call to tell us that a Birth mother had been found and instead of a three month lead up time, she was about to give birth.

Nothing like a dose of reality to get the juices flowing, Tania and I rushed to Johannesburg (was not called Gauteng then), met the birth mom and found out it had been a false labour. My wife used this opportunity to buy out baby city (Oh I forgot to tell you we where running a hotel in the middle of nowhere and was about four hours from Johannesburg), with the help of Tania’s brother and sister (both younger than Gabby is now) as well as 5 trolleys we nearly achieved her goal, as the carts got filled up I saw my credit card balance diminish. Another two weeks passed before the big day arrived.

Gabriella Ayla Dunkley was born on the 26th of November 1996 at 1.40pm on an overcast afternoon. I was there to see my daughter come in to the world, take her first breath and cry for the first time, I do not think that I will ever forget that moment and to be honest whenever I think of that day I get a tear in my eye. I was a dad and Tania Gabby and I where a family.
Gabby is now 12 years old and like all kids that age I will be sending her out to work soon, as she knows everything:- ). I cannot believe that she has grown up so fast, one moment she was dependent on us for everything and now she is becoming a woman, "wow where did the years go to" Gabby is a natural horsewoman and I am sure that one day she will own her own horse farm, Gabby is also very creative and much to our joy an avid reader. Like her dad she also loves history and likes going for motorbike rides.

Having grown up either in the country or in Clarens, Gabby has been lucky to live a life like we knew as kids, climb mountains, swim in dams, ride horses etc etc and it shows in her confident manner. Gabriella Ayla Dunkley, I love you Billizons, have done from the second I saw you and will do until the day I die. I am the luckiest person alive to have you for my daughter, to have been chosen out of all the people in the world to be your Dad xxxxx

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