In the wake of Chadwick Boseman’s passing I am compelled to examine how he touched millions of people with his great portrayal of the Black Panther despite his personal health issues. And by all accounts he was a stand-up guy and many folks, myself included, were devastated to hear the news of his death. As I watched the movie on ABC TV and the tribute following the movie I wondered how he came to be such a great and welcomed hero during this time. And was I capable of exemplifying the traits of a hero?
I am forever touched by individuals who display such human compassion and dignity in their lives like a second nature – effortlessly engaging with others and doing so with authenticity and poise. The life we are living is never promised, yet, some people learn to embrace what has been bestowed upon them as if it was already written in history for them to be great.
And here I sit – in complete awe and mesmerized by Chadwick’s goodness that I want to assess my own morality and step up my game to another level. I don’t want to leave this earth with that incomplete feeling as though I haven’t left all of my cards on the table. Or that I squandered good relationships because of my social ineptitude. Or that I was clueless to the impact I had on other people’s lives because I was caught up in my own self-pity.
It dawned on me that I, too, am a hero – to one – one human being at a time.
My two kids see me as a hero – not that we’ve had conversations but that I see it in how they treat me. Sometimes they seem awed by my ordinary actions that show up as extra-ordinary in the eyes of a child.
Or they describe me to their friends in a way that is uplifting, yet, I’ve done very little heavy lifting.
And they will provide me subtle hints of their immense love for me when I don’t feel lovingly at all.
I am human – I am flawed – I am a hero
And like any great hero we are driven by our internal compasses that guide us to be better than we once were. We are a work-in-progress as we rediscover who we are and the value we bring to others. The value we bring rarely shows up in a way that is blatant but it is ever-present in our daily actions. The eyes of society are upon us. It is important to recognize this and understand the power that has been bestowed upon us as we touch the beautiful souls of others.
Most of us will never receive the recognition of a Marvel Super Hero, but, in many ways we will. It is the quiet, unassuming masks that we don every day that puts us in the same stratosphere of superheroness.
Don’t sell yourself short and learn to embrace your own super powers within. Society needs us. Don’t you see that bat signal?
Prayers to the family and friends of Chadwick Boseman.
Go well and with love good peeps.
A HERO is a real person or a main fictional character who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through feats of ingenuity, courage or strength. Like other formerly solely gender-specific terms, hero is often used to refer to any gender, though heroine only refers to female. Wikipedia