My husband Andrew, who began this blog in October 2007, died peacefully on September 3rd 2012, at the age of 83, after long and well-controlled illness culminating in a sudden, brief decline. I'll be posting pieces of his life writing and autobiographical reminiscences to his other blog, The Game of Life. This blog will be used for other material relevant to Andrew, beginning with the wonderful tributes to him which poured in after his death, both by email and on facebook. At some point this blog will become an archive, without further additions.— Rosemary Nissen-Wade

Thursday, 20 March 2008


Being a dad is a rare experience! When my first son Duncan was born you weren't allowed to witness the birth. I missed out on Cecilia as well, but when Adam was due I got to the hospital in time for the birth. The doctor was late. Adam wasn't going to wait. He'd already busted through the attempts we'd made not to have more kids. I was invited by the matron to go into the theatre but just before the birth there was some sort of hitch and I was ushered out. I went back into the waiting room just as the doctor arrived. Soon after he'd checked things out he burst into the waiting room and proceeded to tear strips off me.

"You didn't invite me to the conception," he said aggressively. "Why should I invite you to the birth?"

But what did I know about being a father? Not much. I made lots of mistakes like spending too much time at work. And I was rarely relaxed enough to spend quality time with my kids, like attending sporting events that they were involved in.

The miracle is, however, that they've turned out brilliantly and suddenly my youngest is 40. I'm at his celebration party. An awesome experience!

"Hey, this is my Dad," he says, introducing me proudly to his friends. What he may not know is that I'm proud to be his Dad and will always wish I could have done better.

My son Adam with his stepmother, my wife Rosemary, April 2008