Time doesn’t allow me to do what I set out to do – that is name each of you individually and to treasure your personal contribution to Antony’s life.
Instead, as a member of the Antony tribe, please accept my strong thanks – for your coming today to honour Antony’s life and passing. And for taking the time to remember and acknowledge the part you’ve played.
We’d been told, “Expect a son by Christmas.” And here we were in June totally unprepared.
We agreed we’d pick Antony up on the Monday. And after a frantic call to my mother, Margaret and I headed off to Sydney for one of the shortest gestation periods of any parents – 3 days.
Everything put together
During those three days: my parents Jessie and Don, and many members of our extended families all worked together to gather all the things a new baby needs. Prams, bassinettes, clothes, milk, bottles, teats, shawls, nappies, baby power, baby oil, safety pins, toys…
Very soon, Margaret’s mother, Maud, flew from Taree to lend a hand and help train us as instant parents. Friends and neighbours offered support.
So from the beginning, Antony was born not just into a family unit, but into a tribe. And he was clothed, fed, loved, nurtured and sustained by the many. Not just by us – his two newly-minted parents. And, later, not just by his sister, Catherine – who from the very beginning shared a special bond with Antony.