Hero: “A person who, in the opinion of others, has heroic qualities or has performed a heroic act and is regarded as a model or ideal.” “A man of distinguished courage or ability, admired for his brave deeds and noble qualities.” Excerpts from dictionary.com
We seem to be living in a fairytale world, where magazine covers are adorned by beautiful but unreal people (thank you oh so much photoshop), where much discussion is of celebrities – held between people or on television – and where a large segment of society judges themselves and others against the impossible bar of celebrityhood. The dictionary.com definition of hero is where this definition should stay; in fairytale land.
I want to ask you to reconsider your own definition of hero. The title shouldn’t be so revered, so withheld except for the bravest of brave acts or the generosity of the most generous. We live and work with heroes every single day. We see heroic acts all the time. Someone who volunteers is a hero. Someone who helps someone is a hero.
There is a boy who lives in the vicinity of Huntsville, Ontario (his name escapes me) who was bullied who, after Years of bullying, finally spoke out. He is creating real change in his school by his actions. In his speech he tells of one girl being bullied in his presence and he told the boys to leave her alone. I believe they said some nasty words to the boy before leaving, but because of his intervention I can assure you he was a hero to that little girl. I wrote this boy to tell him that, so hopefully he realizes how great his actions are and the power he, himself, has in this world. And hopefully receiving such kind words from a stranger will stay in his memory and cause him to never stop standing up for himself or doubt his self-worth. That young man will do much good his life and be a hero to many people.
See? He didn’t have to land a plane on the Hudson River instead of crashing to be a hero. It is very simple and very attainable. You just have to be the best, kindest person you can be and you’ll be a hero to many. Someone needs a door held open? Hero. A homeless person needs money to eat? Hero. An elderly or blind person needs help crossing a busy street? Hero. A child dropped their toy and someone picked it up because the parent didn’t notice? Hero.
We should start celebrating life more, enjoying every single moment of every single day. Realize how connected we are. Do every single thing you can to put a smile on your own face, and that of others. If we all lived by that last line wouldn’t life become utopia? You may not be able to make the world a utopia but you Can start making your own world a utopia. It IS your world after all. Think of the small actions by both the people you do know, and don’t know, that really made your day at some point in your life. The small things, like someone holding open the door when you have both arms full, are as important as safely landing a plane. You shouldn’t read ‘Hero’ as the result of a life versus death action, but instead as someone doing the best for you that they can, in that moment.