“Yours is a story,
So brave and so true
And life is awaiting
The hero in YOU.” – Unknown
I grew up as one of five boys in a family of six kids. My parents encouraged me to participate in sports alongside my brothers in spite of me having cystic fibrosis. They taught me that as long as I tried, I couldn’t fail. That’s where my “You Cannot Fail” mantra originated. However, sometimes I was discouraged because I just couldn’t compete with my brothers. I was small and my coughing slowed me down. That’s when my parents encouraged me not to worry about competing with my brothers but only with myself. They wisely told me, “You may not be able to do what your brothers do, but your brothers don’t have to do what you do. Every day, you do your treatments and take your pills. Maybe they couldn’t handle it like you do. But you do it, and you keep going. You Are the Hero of Your Own Story.”
That’s when I began to understand that every person has their own story of hardships, difficulties and obstacles. You may have a physical impediment of some sort. Perhaps your goal for the day is to get outside and stand for five minutes, and you achieve that. Maybe you’re facing depression, and it’s a win just to get out of bed. You just became the hero of your own story.
You can’t compare. Maybe you can’t do as much as I do; maybe you can do more. It doesn’t matter. Our stories are not the same. I’ve learned: to teach that you’re a hero in your own right and that we can’t compare; to respect other people, what they’re going through and their accomplishments; and to understand that we’re all different with our own unique struggles and stories. Whatever your story is, you can be a hero.
Maybe you’re embarrassed about your own personal struggle. Don’t be. Your fight is what makes you a hero. Feel good about what you’ve accomplished and keep fighting. As long as you’re in the fight, You Are the Hero of Your Own Story.
*Exercise of the Week – Running in place and cough out the junk! (5 sets of 30 sec. reps.)
*Quote of the Week – “A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles.” – Christopher Reeve