Living Happily Ever After


A Hero

Sometimes I think the world is in need of heroes—people who inspire us to be better because they are; people who tenaciously endure and overcome overwhelming obstacles and by their example, help us endure our own; people who are shining examples of the goodness and potential for excellence we each have. And then other times, so many times, I see or meet or read about a hero and realize how many good, inspiring people are already out there in the world, quietly living their lives but in the process, doing and accomplishing heroic things.

I have my own personal heroes, of course, and up until today, had been a hero once. That momentous occasion came courtesy of my oldest son. He had been assigned to write an essay about his hero, and for the first time in his life (or mine) had chosen to write about someone other than hockey legend Joe Sakic—me! As a mother, it was one of THOSE moments. Where you get a glimpse of the impact you’ve had in the life of someone you love most in the world. I filed it away in my memories of motherhood and figured I’d had my day in the sun, so the saying goes.

And then it happened a second time, recently. This time, courtesy of my middle son. He was working on a scouting merit badge and was required to interview someone and write an introduction about that person and he chose me. He borrowed my computer to write it, and I stumbled on to it tonight. He began by saying I was one of his heroes. (Can you feel that? His mother’s heart melting?)

“‘A hero is a person who is admired for courage or noble qualities.’ ( Tonight I’m proud to introduce to you one of my heroes, my mom. Not only is she a great mom and a working mom, she has gone through so much in her life that she has even been on the news—and not just because she works with famous people, like Donny Osmond, sometimes!

My talented mom is the manager of communications at her company. She graduated from Brigham Young University and is a talented writer; she writes about the products her company sells and about the famous people who use them; she writes for herself—she has written in a journal since she was 12 years old; and her personal blog has had hundreds of thousands of views.

My mom is a very inspiring speaker too. She has spoken to small groups, church groups, women’s groups, adult groups, university groups, and even groups of 4,000 or more! When she speaks, she shares uplifting messages about life, making a difference in the world for good and about overcoming obstacles to find and create your own happily ever after. When she talks about her life, she speaks with such enthusiasm and is so happy, it doesn’t seem like everything hard she talks about could have ever happened to her.

Here she is…my mom.”

It was fun for me to get a glimpse into my son’s thoughts. I’m grateful for another motherhood moment, a glimpse into the positive impact I’m blessed to be able to have in a life of another of those I love most in the world. I’m grateful for all those who are and have been heroes to me, too. (I’ve even named my children after some of my heroes.) And while I’m at it, I thought I’d share some of my favorite thoughts about heroes:

“A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles.” (Christopher Reeve)

“A hero is one who knows how to hang on one minute longer.” (Novalis)

“Hard times don’t create heroes. It is during the hard times when the ‘hero’ within us is revealed.” (Bob Riley)

“The hero is one who kindles a great light in the world, who sets up blazing torches in the dark streets of life for men to see by.” (Felix Adler)

When I think about heroes or living a heroic life, it seems daunting, not to mention that it would be the life of another to do something huge and great. But we each can do the above things. We each are, and can be, a hero to another. Life almost requires it. So be a hero. Persevere through and overcome your difficult obstacles, hang on a little longer, choose to let the hard times you face reveal the hero within you that you will be a light for the world, lighting the darkness for others to see by.

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