As Han Cheng walked along, Su Xiaoxiao casually stuffed something into his mouth. Han Cheng hadn’t reacted yet and asked, “What is it?”
Su Xiaoxiao hadn’t spoken yet when Xiao Doubao grinned and showed Han Cheng something, saying, “Candy, Xiao Doubao, mommy, daddy~~~”
The taste of White Rabbit milk candy invaded Han Cheng’s taste buds. He understood that they were all going to eat candy together. Sharing good things as a family was Su Xiaoxiao’s educational philosophy. He reached out to rub his son’s head and gently squeezed his wife’s hand.
The bicycle shed was located at the hospital entrance. Han Cheng asked Su Xiaoxiao to sit down and placed Xiao Doubao on her lap, saying, “Xiao Doubao, hold onto mommy tightly, or you might fall off during the bumps.”
Xiao Doubao nodded and tightly grabbed his mother’s clothes with his two small hands.
Su Xiaoxiao put one hand around Xiao Doubao and the other hand around Han Cheng’s waist, saying, “Pedal slowly.”
Han Cheng pedaled, and the bike slowly moved forward.
The evening breeze was still slightly chilly, and Su Xiaoxiao thought that before winter arrived, she should knit a scarf for Han Cheng. Riding a bicycle every day can still be cold, so she also needs to buy a pair of gloves.
After leaving the camp, there were not many people on the way. Su Xiaoxiao rubbed her head against Han Cheng’s back and said, “Han Cheng, I had some conflicts with the propaganda department and team today.”
“What’s wrong? Are you unhappy with your work?” Han Cheng asked.
Su Xiaoxiao told Han Cheng everything that happened in the afternoon, and finally, as they looked at the horizon adorned with a breathtaking sunset of shifting colors from red to orange, she expressed her frustration, saying, “I understand that unquestioningly following organizational arrangements and enduring hardships is a characteristic of our era. I know they are not at fault. But Han Cheng, it seems like I can’t adapt. It’s not that I’m afraid of hardship or fatigue. I’m afraid that I won’t be able to take good care of Xiao Doubao, our home, and I’m afraid that I won’t have time to study, which might hinder my chances of getting into university. It seems like I overestimated my abilities and underestimated the unpredictability of life. I can’t find a point of balance, and that feeling is truly unpleasant.”
Su Xiaoxiao studied advertising design during her undergraduate years but switched to a different field for her graduate studies. When she was in Su Village, her frustration stemmed from feeling that she couldn’t contribute or be of use, as she couldn’t carry heavy loads or perform physically demanding tasks. Leaving her parents meant even survival became a concern. In such a challenging environment, she felt that marriage was the only way to break free from those constraints.
She didn’t have grand ambitions; she simply hoped that when the opportunity of changing her destiny through knowledge arrived, she could fulfill the original owner’s dream of attending university and do her best to make the lives of her loved ones a little better.
After coming here with Han Cheng, she was very satisfied with the life they had. In a sense, being part of the propaganda team finally allowed her to showcase her skills. However, without the help of grandparents to take care of their child, time and energy became limited resources. There was always a trade-off between work and personal life. Balancing work and life is a major challenge faced by all working mothers without the support of elders, and it is currently a significant challenge for Su Xiaoxiao as well.
Han Cheng parked the car to the side where there was no one around. He embraced both his wife and his son and kissed Su Xiaoxiao on the forehead. “Don’t put too much pressure on yourself. If you took on this project, just focus on the design aspect. You don’t have to worry about anything else. It’s okay. I will talk to the organization. I need a supportive partner to take care of the home front, so I can fully concentrate on research and development. Having one person at the forefront leading the charge and another person at the rear ensuring there are no worries is the best kind of revolutionary partnership. It’s the worst situation when both of us are caught up in chaos on the front lines. The organization will understand.”
It is understandable that unmarried individuals have the drive and energy to pursue their goals, and it is also understandable that married individuals have responsibilities to take care of their families and may need to prioritize them. It’s understandable that it’s difficult for a woman like Su Xiaoxiao a working woman who has to bring her child to work. In fact, organizations usually make special arrangements and provide easier positions for such individuals. It seems like something went wrong this time with the assignment in the propaganda team, and the reasons behind it are unclear.
After talking to Han Cheng, Su Xiaoxiao became much more relaxed. Life is a long journey, and it’s truly challenging to walk that path without a partner who understands you.
Hello, I'm Lucia, and I love novels with themes from the 70s, 80s, and ancient eras. Therefore, I will mainly focus on translating novels from these time periods. If you have any recommendations for novels you'd like me to read and translate, please don't hesitate to send me a direct message on my Discord. Thank you!