All my life, I’ve wanted to be brave.
You know: a sword-wielding, smart-talking, strong, confident woman that’s like John Wayne toilet paper– rough, tough, and don’t take crap off nobody!
I’ve read books, watched movies, and seen television shows that highlighted truly brave women. Their bravery came in various forms. Whether it be Hester Prynne walking around with the red A upon her breast, carrying the weight of her adultery (as well as that pansy-good-for-nothing priest); how Andy wore her ugly pink prom hybrid dress, hand-in-hand with so-much-cuter-than-Blaine Duckie, or Sarah risking it all to get her baby brother back from the Goblin King, Jareth.
Martha Jones walked out into a balcony on the moon, without fear of being killed by its oxygen-sucking powers. (Although, if David Tennant was there, egging me on, I’d probably do it too).
Hermione willing followed her best friends into a trap door leading who knows where, and risked “getting killed… or worse, expelled.”
Esther risked her life to save her people.
Who else got chills when Eowyn ripped of her mask at the end of Return of the King, stabbed the Nazguland subsequently got teary-eyed when she proclaimed proudly: “I am no man!”
Would I have the courage to do the same? Granted, the likelihood of these opportunities coming up is slim to none (although I do think that I heard the distant whirr of the TARDIS nearby…) but still. Could I do so?
Honestly, I’ve never been in a situation where I felt I was truly brave. I mean, I’ve watched my sister go into the hospital twice (and that was terrifying!), but I didn’t feel brave. When 9/11 happened I was absolutely petrified that it was the end of the world. And just not too long ago, when I heard a scratching at the door, I almost peed my pants!
Thinking about moments like those make me have so much more respect for those in the Armed Forces, firemen, police officers, EMTs, and doctors (yeah, I don’t do blood). When I reflect on my past, I cringe at how seemingly cowardly I have been.
But, then I have to remember that bravery can be shown in so many different ways.
- I stood up for myself when people would pick on me for being a Christian.
- I also told a guy that if he didn’t stop messing with my sister, I’d mess him up (I don’t think that technically falls under WWJD…)
- I was a lifeguard for six years. (And let me tell ya, I HAD to be brave watching those little kids swimming around with nothing more than inflatable arm bands to hold them up.)
- A girl wanted to fight me in junior high (for no reason) so I met her outside and she ran away before anyone had to swing.
- I went to a foreign country alone with my sister! (Not that my sister is anything to be fearful of…it was just our first trip without our parents!)
So I guess what matters is that I’m brave in the little things, so when big things come, I can be better at handling them, right? I know I have a long way to go (those that know me personally are saying, “Uh, doi!”) but don’t discount the little acts of the bravery: sitting next to someone others deem “unlovable”, moving out on your own, or taking a new job. Its those little acts of courage that will make us all brave in the end.
“No matter how long you train someone to be brave, you never know if they are or not until something real happens.” ~ Veronica Roth, Insurgent
“It was times like these when I thought my father, who hated guns and had never been to any wars, was the bravest man who ever lived.” ~ Harper Lee, To Kill A Mockingbird