My Role Model | Teen Ink

My Role Model

December 28, 2010
By Anson Lee PLATINUM, Chai Wan, Other
Anson Lee PLATINUM, Chai Wan, Other
22 articles 0 photos 0 comments

During my ten years of lifetime, I have come across and known many people, including famous scientists to politicians, but the person that has made the most impact on me and that I shall always admire is my father. When he was born in 196X, it was a period of poverty as after World War II and a civil war in China, the Communist Party kicked the Nationalist Party (also known as the Guomindang or Kuomintang) into Taiwan before taking over China. Therefore, poor, uneducated immigrants poured over the border in Hong Kong to escape Communism before establishing families with many children. Typically, in those families, the adults had to work long hours for miniscule pay, leaving no time to take care of the young. My father’s family was one of them. Although my father lacked money and parental guidance, through hard work, perseverance, and a persistent character, he escaped his poor background and became a professional in engineering while committing himself whole-heartedly to the family.

My father had a difficult early childhood, mainly because he and his family lived in poverty and his parents were not capable of offering him good guidance and advice. At the time he was born, he had three siblings - one elder brother and two elder sisters. Two years later, he had a third sibling which was another sister. While my grandmother was a factory worker and had to toil away in a toy factory for hours, my grandfather was a sailor and spent most of the year sailing, only returning home a few times a year. Also, both of them only received a few years of basic schooling in China before coming to Hong Kong, so they were incapable of offering any good support and help. Worse, one of his elder sisters kept bullying him by forcing him to strictly follow her orders and whacked him with a cane when he refused to do so. Another fact is that due to poverty, he could only attend public schools and had no money to attend any extracurricular activities or hire tutors. Also, since he was the most clever and smart person in the family, when he was stuck, there was nobody intelligent enough to turn to.

Even with such an upbringing, my father was determined to get a good education and through hard work and perseverance, he managed to achieve what he wanted. Because of the fact that his parents and siblings could not do things for him, he had to do everything himself which included planning timetables for studying. Full of self-reliance, he always stuck to his timetable and studied hard for every test. However, he was bogged down by problems, which included the fact that it was extremely noisy in his one-roomed home because seven people had to live in it. To concentrate, he would go out into the corridor or go to the public library’s study rooms to do his studying. Also, because he was determined to get a good education, he chose all of his schools (including university) carefully so he could get the best out of the choices he had. Although he would sometimes fail at tests and exams, he refused to curl up in a corner and give up. Instead he did the opposite and learnt from the mistakes he made so he would get better marks next time. When he was in grade 11, he found that he was in shortage of reference books and he didn’t have money to buy any more. So he started providing part-time private tutoring in Math and Physics to earn the money he needed to buy the reference books that was required until university graduation.

In addition to being perseverant, my father also had a persistent character and a strong sense of right and wrong which enabled him to achieve his goals. Because in his time, people often knew their neighbors well which was why he would often play in the streets with the neighboring children, making models and such out of street trash and playing games. However, he refused to play any improper games or become a juvenile delinquency. During tests or exams, it was common among classmates to cheat. But unlike them, he was determined not to be like his disobedient classmates and refused to cheat, sticking to his sense of right and wrong and refusing to let himself be influenced by them. He was also very determined to have a good education, no matter what life threw at him.

After years of hard work, my father achieved his wishes and became the only member of his immediate family to enter university and then became a professional in engineering. Prior to this, he graduated from secondary school with flying colors and then chose to study engineering in The University of Hong Kong, which is the top university in Hong Kong. He worked hard in university and graduated with a good honors’ degree. He then started working in various fields of engineering including maintenance, manufacturing, research and development before becoming an engineering consultant. During his work period, he realized that good English was extremely important and then worked extremely hard to improve his own English to the level his profession demanded. Fortunately, because of his effort and all this experience, my father then gained a broad range of professional knowledge and became a charter engineer 10 years after graduation.

Besides having a good character for personal development, he has been fully dedicated to his family since the moment he married my mother. Examples include the fact that he is completely loyal to my mother and has completely no affairs, however tempting it is. Because my mother often has to work overtime, he will first go home to check on me before rushing off to pick her up, expelling all thoughts of sleeping from his mind. He always takes care of me and spends time nurturing me. An example is that when I was small, I would frequently get ill and often had fevers. When that scenario happened, my father would feed me medicine and while I lay down, mop my forehead with a warm towel until my fever started dropping, which was when he would sleep. But he would set an alarm to wake him every two hours so he could check on my temperature. Also, he spends hours reading articles on how to be a good parent and accompanies the family when we go out to have fun. Every time he buys something, it is usually for me or my mother and tries his best to ensure a warm and happy family. He also sacrifices personal entertainment so he can have time planning reading and writing schemes for me. When I study or do homework, he always helps me with it by explaining bits that I don’t understand. Therefore, everything he does is always for the family.

To me, my father is an amazing person because he came from humble origins to become a successful person in life. His perseverance, hard work and determination are qualities that I wish to see in myself soon. I have learned that I must face my life problems with determination and perseverance and I hope to be able to be like him having self-reliance, self-care on work related to school and exams, and having a diligent personality. I wish to develop these characteristics by secondary school so I can have good grades and become more independent and mature. I also learn that when I grow up and have my own family, I must be like him, whole-heartedly committed to my own family so that everybody would be happy. I want to be like this because I think family is very important, especially for child development. To sum it up, my father’s qualities and characteristics deserve my love, respect and admiration.

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