by Shelly-Ann Daley (contributor)
She needed a hero, so that’s what she became…
Sometimes childhood memories escape from its box and you can’t help but long for a time when things were simpler, and you found pleasure in the simplest of things. In a land some time ago there was a princess. She attended Vacation Bible School at a church near her home and was given corned beef sandwiches and ice-cold lemonade, a lime green crown and a yellow kite that could be inflated like a balloon. She loved that crown. She however loved her yellow kite more and wanted to take that kite everywhere. That summer she and her sister travelled to the magical kingdom called the Sunshine City to spend their summer vacation with the King, the Queen and the Prince. Of course, the kite had to make the trip too!
When she got there, she longed to go to the beach where the winds were strong so that she could hoist her yellow kite and bask in the sun… she didn’t care much for the water. They got to the beach and the king showed her how to fly the kite… when it was her turn the wind proved to be too mighty for her and fought with her for the yellow kite… it won. She watched as it took her yellow kite with it and she started to cry. The King immediately jumped in the car and followed the yellow kite until the wind let it go. She didn’t know how far he went to get it but she was grateful that he did. When they got home, she deflated her yellow kite and put it away in a draw so as never to lose it again. She kept it until she outgrew it. On that day she saw the King as her hero, the person who saved something she loved.
The princess grew older and went to live in the kingdom and over the years that perception changed, just as she outgrew the yellow kite. She outgrew the idea that she should be dependent on someone else to be her hero. She watched as the person she saw as her hero metamorphosed into a villain. He reduced himself to someone she would never want her son, brother, husband to emulate. Someone who she once saw as strong and heroic was reduced to someone who she thought she now needed a hero to defeat. She then asked herself the question… What made him a villain? He must have had a reason for becoming the “bad” person he is now? She realized that he was enabled, made to feel entitled, made to feel that he was to be “served” and taken care of and the rules of the Kingdom made by him had to be followed. “Thou shalt not eat this” “Thou shalt not do this” “Thou shalt not do that” “My Prince shall not do this”. Some may say that should not have skewed her perception. But it did because she was made to feel as if she was the “servant”. As if that was her sole purpose. She then realized that she also looked to other people in the kingdom to be her hero. She hoped the Queen would have stood up for, but she didn’t. She supported her King and helped to enforce the rules of the kingdom though some of those rules bothered her.
Over the years the Queen grew weary and realized that her King was lacking, and it frustrated her. She cursed, spat insults and lashed out with her fiery tongue. She also took out her anger on the prince and princess of the kingdom and that bothered them. The princess felt overwhelmed and felt as if she was not loved and that she was the least favourite of all the other princesses and princes. The princess knew that she was not perfect, but she also knew she didn’t deserve to be treated as such. Her heroes failed her. As such she decided that there was none better to save her than herself. She had to be her own hero.
All this reminiscing brought to mind another simple truth that is so important to remember, and it is this — no matter what you are going through, sometimes you have to be your own hero. And you know what? There is nothing wrong with that ideal if that is what it takes to keep you going forward.