"Years later as a man and father of three girls, I know that tough love, is a helluva lot better than no love at all. I’ll take it. It’s made me who I am today," said the star.
Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson may be at the peak of his career, going from professional wrestling to acting in some of the biggest movie franchises such as Fast and Furious and Jumanji. But if there's one thing he hasn't forgotten, it's where he's come from. And at the helm of his roots was his father, the famous wrestling star, Rocky Johnson who left the 47-year-old actor heartbroken with his death on January 15, 2020, according to CNN.
To The Tooth Fairy actor, it was his father who shaped him into the person he is today both as a man and "more importantly a father." Two years ago, on Father's Day in 2018, Johnson took to Instagram to share a sentimental post which included a heartwarming throwback picture of him as a young boy and his dad, Rocky flexing. He explained how his father's tough love molded him, according to People.
“Happy Father’s Day to this hardly ever smiling OG badass. Little boys by nature, look up to and idolize their old man. They want to be just like em, do whatever they do and are always looking for their approval. Funny thing is the day I stopped looking for that approval was the day I understood what it meant to be man and more importantly, a father,” Johnson said. “That shift lifted me to a new level of gratitude for the tough love he always gave. Years later as a man and father of three girls, I know that tough love, is a helluva lot better than no love at all. I’ll take it. It’s made me who I am today. Grateful to the original Rock. #HappyFathersDay #KingStache #RockyJohnson,” he concluded.
The father-of-three also saw his dad as the toughest guy he knew. Johnson explained how his father's upbringing caused him to be the way he was. In another Instagram post, Dwayne Johnson shared a tragic story about his father's childhood.
"My dad's dad died when he was 13yrs old. That Christmas, my dad's mom had her new boyfriend over for Christmas dinner. Her boyfriend got drunk and pissed on the turkey. My dad went outside, got a shovel, drew a line in the snow and said if you cross that line I'll kill you. The drunk crossed it and my dad laid him out cold as a block of ice. Cops were called. They told my dad's mom that when her boyfriend regains consciousness, he's gonna kill your son so one of them has got to go. In front of the entire family, my dad's mom looked at him and said get out. He was 13yrs old and now homeless."
Yet, Rocky brought himself to where he was and gave his son the kind of love he thought was best. "Every Christmas, I always think about that story and my dad having every odd stacked against him at 13, but he fought thru it and still made something of himself. Makes me appreciate his struggle and hard work," said the Baywatch star. But as much as he valued the way his father battled his way to the top, in the beginning, it was difficult for young Johnson to handle his father's form of affection.
He wrote, "He's had a hard life. This one felt good. My dad, Rocky Johnson is a minimalist. Always has been. Never asks me for much and over the years his needs are always the barest. Over the years, I've moved him into a big home, got him trucks to drive - which he'll literally drive into the ground until I get him something else. Hell, I'll get him anything he wants, but the SOB just won't ask;)."
In the same Instagram post, he wrote, "Also, makes me appreciate the fun times he would beat my ass in the gym so bad when I was 13 and say 'If you're gonna throw up, go outside.. and if you're gonna cry, then go home to your mother'. I hated it then, but I embrace it now. Made a man outta me. Without pissing on my turkey." So while he was still around to give the actor company and love, the latter wanted to do everything he could to make his father's life comfortable.
R.I.P Rocky Johnson.