Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson found an extra special way to thank his dad for all the love he received growing up.
In a touching Instagram post over the weekend, the Fighting with my Family star, 46, opened up about the emotional moment he told his dad, former pro-wrestler Rocky Johnson, that he wanted to buy him a new home.
“I just got off the phone with my dad and man, it was a great call,” the actor shared in a sweet video posted on Sunday. “About 2-3 weeks ago, I called my dad and I said, ‘Look, you’re probably happy where you’re at.’ I said, ‘but I want to do something for you. I want to buy you a brand new home, wherever you wanna live, you can live.”
“He couldn’t believe it, he was speechless,” the former PEOPLE’s Sexiest Man Alive title holder continued. “And he goes, ‘I’m so excited, and I’m also so nervous. My dad’s an old school tough guy, I said, ‘What the hell you nervous about? He said, ‘Well, no one,’ he was searching for words, and he’s like, ‘no one ever called to tell me they were going to buy me a house before and the fact that it’s you, it’s my son, I’m so proud of you, and I love you so much.”
Explaining that he was surprised at the way his father responded, Johnson shared, “I’ve never heard my dad talk like that.”
“It felt good to me, and it felt good to my heart,” he continued. “My dad used to beat my ass, tough love, and I hated it back then, but I’m so grateful for it now and it just felt good to kinda give back to the ones who raised you so, love you too, pop.”
Alongside the video, the actor shared a sweet caption as he elaborated on the strong bond the pair shared throughout his life.
“He’s a weathered soul and like all weathered souls, there’s often a harsh storied path that got them there. Well for my pops that path started at 13yrs old when his mom kicked him out of his house on Christmas day and forced him to live on the streets (very true and f—ed up story) so his reality of compassion and love was forged thru pain and toughness,” he wrote. “He raised me with that tough physical love and used to beat my ass in the gyms and on wrestling mats. I hated it then as a little boy, but grateful for it today as a man.”
“It’s shaped my DNA and helped inform how I raise my own babies (minus the ass kickings;) but always instilling the value of hard work and discipline. For that I’m grateful and this one felt good. Crazy how full circle life can come. Enjoy your new house pop – what a storied path and thanks for the ass kickings,” he continued.
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Months earlier, Johnson revealed that he’d also gotten his mother, Ata, a new house for Christmas.
“Surprise! Bought my mom a new home for Christmas,” the actor captioned an Instagram video of his mother receiving a “golden ticket” that entitles her to any house she wants, wherever she wants.
In the video, Ata, 70, opens a card with the ticket and starts to read it before crying tears of joy and hugging her son.
“Guess what?” she says to her granddaughter Jasmine, 3. “I get a brand-new house!”
Johnson explained how his family moved often when he was young and never truly created a home anywhere.
“All our lives growing up we lived in little apartments all across the country,” the former WWE wrestler said. “Lived like gypsies on the road from one state to another. The first home my parents ever lived in was the one I bought for them in 1999. They divorced about 5yrs later and as with life, stuff happens and things got a little complicated. Since then I always made sure my mom and dad have everything they’ll ever need – houses, cars etc.”
“But the house this time is a special one and the timing is very meaningful,” the Moana star continued of his mom’s Christmas gift. “I told her to treat this card like it’s ‘Willy Wonka’s Golden Ticket’ because she gets to choose any home she wants – anywhere she wants.”