There’s nothing more terrifying for a parent than finding out your child is sick. Being able to spend time round the clock with your child, to ensure they’re never alone while going through a medical battle is a luxury most parents can’t afford. Mortgages still need to be paid, groceries still need to be bought, and often other children need attention as well. As medical expenses pile up, including outfitting one’s home for when their child is hopefully released from the hospital, most parents must keep working while their child is ill.
This past April, Sick Kids Hospital in Toronto honoured all the hard-working moms taking care of sick children in their touching and emotional MomStrong ad. Now the hospital has done it again, this time shining a light on the dads who are also dealing with the painful reality of caring for a sick child.
In the new ad titled DadStrong, the camera follows a man as he spends a long day working on a construction site, before making the drive through downtown Toronto to relieve his wife and spend the night at the hospital with his sick daughter. Set to a beautifully slowed down version of “Sweet Child Of Mine,” the video is a slow burn that waits until the last few seconds to reveal its serious subject matter. What makes the ad even more powerful is learning that the man in the ad is Frank, the father of one-year-old Naya, who spent 14 months at SickKids after she was born in March 2016.
Although Naya’s twin sister Milayna was born healthy, Naya’s heart condition required more than a year of treatment for the infant, including surgery. During her extended stay in SickKids, Frank kept his HVAC business going during the day, traveling to SickKids at night to give his wife a break and spend time with his daughter.
If you’re like us and are hoping for some good news to help stop the sobbing, we’re happy to report that Naya is now home with her sister and parents.
SickKids have set up a page of gift ideas for dads whose children will be in the hospital for Father’s Day. The Get Better Gifts page has several gift donation options that can be made to help fathers of sick children have a better day. This includes a glider chair, video game controllers dads can use with their kids, and books for story time.
Just in case you have any tears left in your system, here’s the MomStrong ad as well.