Dear Mr Tattersalls,
I wrote to Santa Claus but he must have forgot what I want. My Dad says I can have anything I want if he wins tattslotto. The TV says we can get 30 million dollars. But only if we win. If I had that much, I really could get anything I want, and the thing I want most is my Dad home from prison.
You see Mr Tattersalls, Dad talks about you all the time, even though he never met you. When Mum and Dad fight he sometimes screams ‘George - tatts me out of here.’ And then Mum laughs. Other times Dad talks about all the things he would get for our family when we win the first dvision. Dad says its different to division in school cos Ms Anderson is teaching us that next year in grade three.
My Dad is not a bad man. Its true that there are bad people in prison cos my friend watched a show on pay TV about prison in America but my Dad never did any of that stuff. My Dad has the diabetes. It’s a condition my Mum says. But Dad calls it a disease and he says ‘condition’ is just a nicer way of saying disease that you have for a long time. Dad had it since he was my age and my older sister has it too. I used to want to have it. But now I don’t.
One day Dad went to work and never came home. Mum said he went for a holiday. But after a few weeks I stopped believing her. She thinks I still believe in the easter bunny too but everyone knows that’s not true, Dad puts out the eggs. He didn’t this year. Then some kids at school started saying stuff about my Dad. I got mad and Mum had to come to the principals office. They sent me to speak to a counselor.
The counselor smelled like vanilla. She spoke too soft and some words I couldn’t hear. I told her that I knew my Dad wasn’t on holidays. So Mum came to the counselor with me the next time and they told me Dad was in prison cos of the diabetes. ‘But he is not bad’ I said to the counselor ‘so why is he in prison?’ She said that Dad drove his car to work and hit it into another car cos the diabetes made him pass out. The man in the other car died, but Dad still lived.
I cried lots that night. I hoped that the man that died didn’t have kids. They would be sadder than me even. Mum said it wasn’t Dad’s fault. I believed her again now. She said his sugar went too low and that made him pass out. Like the time at aunt Glenda’s birthday party before I was born and they had to call an ambulance. I remember that story. When Dad tells it he says the ambulance woman gave him mouth-to-mouth and Mum got mad.
So you see Mr Tattersalls, it’s not really Dad’s fault. It’s just the diabetes that made him pass out. Plus, he said he was sorry the other man died. My Dad was a good driver and he never had any crashes. My uncle Jim did though. He was always getting new cars. And he went on holiday lots too. So I asked Mum if uncle Jim had the diabetes. But she said he drank to much beer and that’s why he had lots of car accidents and holidays (but I think she meant prison and didn’t want to say it). She says uncle Jim can stop drinking beer if he wants but dad can’t stop having his diabetes. It’s not fair she says.
At Christmas lunch, its Dads job to do the cooking. Uncle Jim drinks beer and aunt Glenda brings cake. Dad says her cakes are too dry but she always puts a lucky coin in them. This year we got take away food and aunt Glenda didn’t bake her cake. Everyone missed Dad. Even uncle Jim cos Dad couldn’t drive him home. Mum cried when she gave us our presents. She said we spent all the money on trying to get Dad out of prison and she wanted to get us more. Mum said they might let Dad out early if we won tattslotto. So that's why we need your help Mr Tattersalls. Mum says our luck has to change. Last year Dad got the lucky coin.
Me (and Mum too)
Me (and Mum too)