Jacob and I do a lot together. I love to take him out to the river and go whitebaiting, getting out to the pub and just cruising around together getting up to mischief, the usual father and son antics. We try and do as much as we can, sometimes it’s a challenge but we always find a way around.
I think the proudest thing for me as a father has been watching my family work as a team. We’ve always stuck together to get through the hurdles we’ve had to climb. But I’m proud of Jacob and his willpower the most.
I watch his mates run around and drive their cars, things that Jacob can’t do. But he's bought his own Holden for him and his mates to cruise in together, he recently completed a Level 3 NZ Certificate in Intermediate Computing, he’s trying out DJ'ing and has even played Wheelchair Football. Together, we even fundraised for a year to upgrade to an off-road wheelchair for him to drive around wherever, including the beach. He’s part of the community disability group to try and make places more accessible for everyone too.
One of my dreams would be able to get Jacob out on my motorbike, but it’s just finding a way to do it safely. When I'm not on my bike, I'm in the tanker and have been for the last three years. Jacob has always wanted to join me and one day the guys at Fonterra just helped make it happen. He was able to join me in collecting milk from a few farms which was cool.
The guys also helped Jacob and I to tick off some of Jacob’s other bucket list items. One of the best times had been when Jacob and I both wanted to fish together, so the team helped build a crate which could lift Jacob and his wheelchair onto the boat. It was just an awesome day to be able to go fishing with him.