Dads world


Sinead being cradled in her fathers grasp

By Kiran Bedder-Patel

We all hope to one-day grow up, have children, and watch our parents cradle them with joy. With happiness and with love.

As a man, you want to see your dad cradle your son as another prince was born and as a woman, to see him welcome another princess into his world.

In 1999, Sinead Rose Crane, 23, lost her dad, Paul. He tragically committed suicide and left that gap in her life. A gap, what can’t be replaced.

Now, a working mum of two, she often finds herself confused and with many questions to ask.

She explains how it felt growing up without her father. “I remember going into my mums room and seeing a box with loads of old newspaper articles all about his death.

“Tributes were pouring in from his friends, my aunt and uncle and loads of other family members. That was when I was about five.”

Paul was just 29 and left behind a wife and two children as well as a loving and caring family.

A road worker, he often attended football matches with friends thus leading him to a football hooligan reputation. Sinead was just four-years-old when he left and never returned.

“I’ve been told he fought at football matches and away pubs. Mum and other people said it. Always beating people up so thankfully he didn’t meet any of my boyfriends.”

By the age of seven, Sinead finally understood that her dad wasn’t around, but it was only at the age of 11 she was told he had passed away.

“Mum told me when I was in year six at school, she sat me down and explained everything what happened and told me nothing but the truth. She was so strong, especially to do that.

“I didn’t know how to react as I’ve never knew what it was like to have a dad, so I couldn’t of been sad. I guess it was just confusion but I didn’t want to ask any questions at the time.”

Accompanied with a glass of wine, she sits on her sofa with her feet up and snuggling to a cushion in her pyjamas.

Having her own house, with her two children asleep and partner out for evening, she dives into detail upon the family life she hopes to have, and the one she’s missed out on.

“My sister doesn’t remember him (two years younger) but mum always says she’s like him. Snappy and sensitive.

“I remember seeing childhood videos of us in the snow playing with him. We are running and he’s in place to catch us with our over-sized hats on. Of course I’ve seen photo’s but seeing family videos is always nicer. That’s about it.”

When asked upon how it has affected her, her lifestyle and choices, there’s a brief pause followed by a stutter and then silence once more. A moment to gather the tender thoughts is followed by a crackled speech.

“It makes you question everything you do, as he had no reason to do it. Was it because of me? Why do it? Do you know what I mean? You just overthink things I suppose.”

But what about her, as a mother?

Mothering a five-year-old girl and a two-year-old boy, they will never get to know their grandfather.

“I think I’m way more protective as a parent and feel the need to spoil them rotten” she says turning on minions at nine o’clock at night.

“They must have everything they want, it gives me anxiety because I don’t want them to be like me. Emotionally unstable. When I get in a nervous state, is it cause of my dad? I don’t know.

“As a mother I guess I get anxiety and I just don’t want to miss out on anything in my kid’s life. From winning trophies to first dates. I wanna be there.”

Deep into thought, Sinead interrupts a question with a strong statement of: “I do feel empty at times, if he was alive, I’d ask why? Why did you do it? Fool you for what you left behind.”

Based on the Key trends from the Samaritans Suicide Statistics Report 2017, the highest suicide rate in the UK was for men aged 40–44 and male rates remain consistently higher than female suicide rates across the UK and Republic of Ireland.

“I’ve actually been bullied about it before. I was only 12, yeah I was told ‘your dad didn’t love you’ and that hit hard but what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger. Mum taught me that.”

Devouring all her wine, she can be excused for maybe having a soft spot touched but she expresses further about the pain and wonder.

“If he was alive I wouldn’t know what to say to him. I can just tell, we wouldn’t have got on. Not to mention I was pregnant at 17, so I know he wouldn’t of liked that. He would have been very strict on me.”

Sinead does however still keep close contact with both of her grandparents, who were there for the whole family at the tragic time.

“They spoil me and the kids, treat me like a princess and I just think, yes, I am their granddaughter but also I think its cause they attempt to make life a little easier on me and my sister.

“They both know and think everyone else does as well, I have many unanswered questions what will stay with me.” Sinead’s mother eventually re-married and had another child, with a step-father figure taking the role, she recaps on what a ‘real dad’ should be like.

“Somebody that listens to me, hears my cry and I can reach out too. Someone who cares like a dad should.”

To conclude our meeting, a question which gets asked touches one of the raw spots.

What would you say to him if he was standing in front of you? “Wow, erm… Why did you do it? That’d have to be one. Then just point out on the things he missed out on and show him how bloody well I’m doing.”

What about him? What would he say?

“I’m sorry.”

Sinead somehow manages to muster up a smile and slowly stands up to heavily breathe out.

An interview what would take anyone’s breath away, but she remains strong throughout and mellows the conversation with an odd chuckle and sparkling smile.

“Talking about it is good mind you, but it’s not gunna change what a thing. It is what it is.”

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