I Believe that Men are Tender Inside

Jingjing - Beijing, China
Entered on November 25, 2008
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: family, love

People tend to use “tough”, “bold”, or “ambitious” to address a man, while “gentle” is preserved for woman. However, I want to say: a Mr. Right in the family is tender inside.

I feel lucky to live in a loving family with a somewhat lazy mom, a housekeeper dad and a kind old grandma. My grandpa passed away when I was five, in kindergarten. He was, in my memory, a handsome and caring old man. He was more than ten years older than grandma. Each morning, he woke up before dawn, tiptoed quietly outside and jogged a long way to buy the deep-fried dough sticks for grandma who loved this kind of traditional breakfast. However, the famous shop was two kilometers away. It’s possible for a youngster to do it occasionally, but for an old every day, you can figure out the difficulties.

Personally, I preferred my grandpa. Being a girl, I was no better than a side dish in the eye of grandma. But for grandpa, I was an angel who granted him a better late years. I still treasure the memory that he carried me on his back every afternoon, walked to the market and bought me grapes. Why grapes, I cannot explain. It’s amazing. I just cannot help missing him.

I believe my dad inherits the tender core of grandpa. He is as strong as a tiger outside home, but as tamed as a lamb inside. Friends often joke that he is a henpecked husband, but only he knows the sweetness of “being henpecked”. My mother is also much younger than him thus she sometimes acts like a lazy and child-like girl who leaves everything in a mess. Dad never gets hot-tempered with these which he terms as” no-big-deal” things. His tolerance now becomes the guideline for my boyfriend.

My father was born in the postwar years, and he experienced the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution. As for this reason, he won’t let us experience the hardships. He always keeps the best food for my grandma, mom and me. When I was young, I took this for granted, as long as I could eat the best part. As I grow up, I learn the lesson of sharing, with my friends, with my lover and most important, with the ones who have always kept the best for me. At the table, I put a chicken leg inside my father’s bowl, but as usual, he returns it in mine, commanding, “Keep it yourself.” Oh, papa, do you know each year when I back home, I feel so pity that the age have changed your smooth face, but what remains is your tender heart toward the beloved ones.

There are thousands of these tender grandpas, fathers, husbands and sons in our families who tenderly care for us, boldly protect us, and what’s more, treasure us as princesses in their hearts.