We Can Be Heroes
Is there something in my reflection?
I studied his face and peered into the gentle creases, sparkling eyes and warm features wondering what if anything, I’d inherited. What were the similarities between my late Grandfather and I? We shared the same volumous ear lobes, the same hair line and some familiar curves in our skin, but as I looked again, it struck me that I was searching for a deeper reflection, a discovery of character. For here was a man who had a profound impact on those around him.
As I explored further, I heard the voices of many applauding peace keepers in war torn territories, fizzing with excitement over sporting heroes, praising world leaders and spiritual figure heads. I couldn’t help feeling distant and removed from these personalities, past and present, they lacked proximity to my world, my life, my everyday. The man looking back at me was a real life hero, an ordinary man of extraordinary character. Generosity of spirit and possessions, he loved to share, placing others needs above his own, eager to help people realise their potential, kind-hearted yet owning courage of conviction to do the right thing rather than choosing what was popular. One might call him righteous, of course his character was sharpened by life’s experiences but it was his response which shaped the man he became. A hero for who he was, rather than what he achieved.
Where are the heroes of our age? Does ‘hero’ lie in the fallibility of sporting personas, TV personalities, politicians pilloried for their every decision, musicians tortured by their art. Or is ‘hero’ defined by an assemblage of the everyday? Maybe it’s closer to home than we think, it could live in the reflection addressing us each morning. Who knows, I might be fortunate enough for someone to look at my photograph one day, staring into the creases of my face and wondering the same thing.