Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson reflects on the relationship with his late father Rocky Johnson and how his death changed that.
On January 15, the WWE Hall of Famer passed away at the age of 75 and his passing has touched many in the wrestling world, including Dwayne. Soon after Rocky's passing, Dwayne appeared on Oprah Winfrey's "Oprah Super Soul Conversations" podcast and spoke on his feelings when he passed away and his father's final days, which he said didn't contain a lot of suffering. In the chat with Winfrey, Dwayne admitted that he had a "complicated relationship" with his father, saying he showed a lot of tough love.
"It's the cycle of life. It's beautiful, it's painful, it's amazing, it's incredible, it's all of these things. I will tell you this, in this process, I had a complicated relationship with my dad. There was a foundation of tough love with my father, wasn't a big, 'I love you' guy. As complicated as it was, what gave me great satisfaction at the funeral, was to see that he was a great friend to so many guys. A challenged father, but a great friend to so many people, so he went quick. There wasn't a lot of suffering [in his final days]," Dwayne said.
With Rocky's death being so sudden, Dwayne said he did not get a real chance to say everything he wanted to say to his dad. However, Dwayne added that he recognizes that the relationship the two had was appropriate for its time, saying he has a lot of respect for what he was able to do in the wrestling industry.
"No, I did not [say everything to my father that I wanted to say]. The tricky thing that we all go through with this is, what I realized in the past couple of weeks is that it's good to explore these feelings, feeling a little guilty and I didn't get a chance to say the things I wanted to say or I wish he would have said things to me, as a father. Now as a father of three, the important thing that anchors us that I didn't get from him is that it's okay to explore these feelings and to heal so that we come back to an anchoring foundation of gratitude. Gratitude for what I was able to have with him. I wasn't able to say the things I wanted to say to him. But the other important thing is that, in death, that's when we spiral, but the relationship I had with my dad was the relationship that was appropriate at that time," Dwayne said.
In the end, Dwyane spoke about how that relationship has changed and said there is a new relationship in spirit.
"I feel like the day he died, that night when I went to bed, I felt so grateful and moved, emotionally, because I realized that I have a new relationship with you. I have a new relationship in spirit, I have a new relationship with you, a clean slate, no regrets, no pain, no anger, no complication. Just me and you," Dwayne said.
The full podcast can be listened to at this link.