Friday, 8 May 2015

What is Bravery?

Just what do you think of when someone asks you to define bravery? Is it the firefighters who pull people out of burning buildings or the police officers who patrol our streets? Do you think about our brave soldiers fighting in wars at home and in far flung countries to protect us from tyranny or the doctors and nurses who save lives and tend the sick? Is it the social worker who gives up time with their own family to help less fortunate families through difficult times?  All of these people are definitely heroes and deserve an amazing amount of respect. However, maybe we should look at what bravery means to ordinary people. To you and me.


This week I saw an extraordinary little girl do something brave. That little girl is my daughter. I didn't want to use this blog as a platform to talk about her too much as I used to have a different blog in relation to her and how wonderful she was. But, this week every time I look at her I just want to shout from the rooftops how proud I am. You see, my daughter has a learning disability and autism and is afraid of many things and struggles with much. Despite all this she always wants to help other people and so has decided to get her lovely long hair cut and donate her hair to The Little Princess Trust. This charity provides wigs, free of charge, to children who have lost their hair through cancer or other illnesses. I have spent a great deal of time discussing how getting her hair cut will change her appearance and how she might feel uncomfortable getting so much hair cut off. However, she is still insistent that is what she wants to do. She has also begun raising sponsorship money for the charity. Her selfless act really got me thinking about the whole bravery issue. Imagine doing something that you know is going to be difficult but still having the courage to do it.


For me, bravery is the people who struggle through life but still get out of bed every morning and live that life no matter how difficult it may be. Bravery is those who are in pain every day but still manage to greet the day with a smile and hope that the day will bring relief. Bravery is about the parents who manage to get dressed and run a brush through their hair despite only getting 2 hours sleep! Bravery is standing up and asking for help even though you know there is a risk you may be judged. Bravery is walking that extra mile when you are too exhausted to put one foot in front of the other. Bravery is taking a risk on love or walking away from a love that is disappearing before your eyes. Bravery is the person who trudges the streets every day looking for work and never giving up despite numerous knock-backs. I could go on and on. I think the message that I am trying to get across is to look around you and look at all the people who are being brave and probably don't even realise that they are heroes! Are you one of those people? I bet you are! Bravery is all around us in the little things we do that have more of an impact that we could ever imagine. Sometimes, the biggest heroes are those people who get up each day and think, 'I will not give up today.' What's your superpower?