Sometimes I hear about a person in my circle of friends and acquaintances who is doing it hard and doing it quietly and uncomplainingly. It crosses my mind that these people are really everyday heroes, in their own sphere.
We don’t often recognise these stalwarts for their contributions because we think of heroes as being those who lead forces in battle, tie themselves to trees in old-growth forests, or save lives. I’ll never forget the faces pictured on the front page of the Sydney Morning Herald after the Port Arthur massacre. Many of them were men who had acted as human shields to protect their families from being shot by a crazed gunman, and who gave up their lives in the process.
Among the group of ordinary heroes, there are the school teachers who give many unpaid extracurricular hours to their students because they know this is what it takes to shape the kids’ futures; the single mums or dads who are unstintingly there for their kids, keeping the roof over their heads, while sometimes wearing hats as both mother and father; and the armies of volunteers in social services, without whom those they serve might not survive or just have to live their lives cut off from society.
Right now I’m thinking of the woman who runs our tiny general store at Manning Point. She’s there day in and day out, acting as postal agent, petrol attendant, fry cook and more. I feel grateful for her support of our small community each time I walk in the shop.
Who are the heroes in the yoga world? Maybe they are lowly-paid teachers, who do their schtick with much love and passion, who show up rain, or snow, or hail, sometimes in 5 am darkness for the early shifts of classes, and are there even in holiday periods.
Daniel and I do an acknowledgement exercise, whereby we take 5 minutes each to notice things that we appreciate about each other. While the behaviours we acknowledge each other for may not be of heroic proportions, perhaps it does take heroes to stay steady in relationship and to keep recreating love and respect over the years and decades.
Try looking for some heroes in your neighbourhood today. I’d be interested in what you find 🙂
Everybody is a hero in their own story if you just look. – Maeve Binchy