When I was a very young man, my grandfather, one of the men I still revere most in my life…even though he is gone now, sat me down and taught me something I would never forget. He said to me, “Evan, always treat the women in your life with the utmost care. Because they will always take care of you. If someone hurts a woman in your life, you make sure they never do that again.”
My grandfather was a great man. He had good southern blood in him and taught me, even though I was very young at the time, things I would never forget. He was a man of discipline but great love. While he may not have said I love you, you could feel it. I will always remember how he used to kiss me goodnight. He would hold the side of my head and kiss my forehead 5 times. When I would visit him on the East Coast, I would remember seeing him come out of his room in a suit every single day. From him, I learned so many things without him actually telling me. He didn’t need to. He showed me.
Throughout the past few years, I have started to find my own way and create my definition of what it means to be a man. This definition is very different from what society has created for itself today. For the longest of time I felt lost trying to be something that only led me to pain. The path that is groomed for you today isn’t healthy. There are few examples of true good men out there standing for what is right. We need our heroes.
My friends call me an old soul, and maybe that is because there is a lot more of my grandfather in me than I realize. I have simple tastes and value things that are not in material form, but that are truly significant to my heart. What happens though is that I am often misunderstood because of my actions. I guess this comes with the territory. I take care of the women in my life no matter who they are. Why? Because they are supposed to be looked after…taken care of…and loved. It’s not because they aren’t strong enough to do it themselves…but I do it because it is part of everything that I have to offer. Why ever withhold love from the people around you? It doesn’t matter if you are romantic with them or not. Because when you are able to love your heart out, no matter what the capacity of the relationship is, it makes you a better man. It makes you care about people, feel their emotions, and it connects you on a different level with the people around you. There is a reason why Love is part of my mantra.
I have written stories of heartbreak and pain of loss. But I have never stopped loving or putting my heart out there for the world to see. When you cage yourself off to passionately caring about someone, you lose a piece of yourself. I have never been one to do things without fire in my heart. I not only expect this from myself, but I know that my friends can expect this from me as well. To give them the best I have no matter what. The bar that I have set for my character is high, and I will do things that are in line with that bar. Often of times, that involves going the extra mile for people. Not because I have to, but because I want to.
You will be understood by many, but one day it will click. And in that day, you will brand your mark on the hearts of those around you, and they will always remember you as someone who loved dearly without expectation.
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