What is a Hero?
"A person who is admired for great or brave qualities." That is the definition that would pop up on the Merriam-Webster Dictionary App for the word 'hero'. Look the same word up on Google Images and you would find over a million results within 0.3 seconds. The internet would show you pictures of Iron Man, Superman, or any other comic book hero you can think of. However, these are not the everyday heroes we see when we look around us for inspiration. A hero is a figure who displays a quality that anyone or anything (like an idea) can be inspired by.
A hero is an athlete from a small background who teaches his fans to pursue their dreams no matter what obstacles come in the way. A girl around the age of 14, wanting to prove her skill in the sport of ice hockey. Coming from a poor background, consider the intense effort it would take to be the best to acquire the best kinds of scholarships. What kind of obstacles could comes in her way to disable her from getting the scholarships? Her hero would guide her through the phase of getting started at the thing she loves. Having gone through the same situation, they can give feedback, advice, and recommendations in order for her to be successful in her goal. This inspiration of, "If he can do it, so can I" makes that guide a hero. This is because his actions have inspired a young girl in choosing her life path. When this girl finally realizes her achievements, it will develop a great admiration towards that person, making him her hero.
A hero is a teacher who inspires his students to take risks and be responsible for the outcomes. Mady is a super cautious student. She thinks that the rubric is the final word. She does what she is told to do, word for word. Her teacher, Mr. Papahronis is impressed with her perfect grades but, while grading, he knows that she can do better than a robot programmed to get a 100% grade on everything. After realizing the necessity to urge Mady to do something different, Mr. Papahronis talks to Mady about her work. He encourages her to try something different, like exploring different apps and mashing them together to make the best project ever. He teacher her to do something new and stick to the outcome - to be proud of it. He tells her to take that result and develop it into something better. These words of inspiration eventually go a long way for Mady because now, she thinks of this conversation and applies it to everything she does. Having changed Mady’s life in a positive way allows Mr. Papahronis to display the main quality of a hero.
In the end, both the athlete and the teacher symbolize the definition of being a hero. Anyone who inspires another to do something that would potentially change their lifestyle should be considered a hero, even though opinions may change. While many are competent enough of putting on a cape and using special powers or money to "save the world", only some are capable of being true heroes. Think about your own life, think about where the motivation to persist comes from, think about who your true hero or heroes. Reflect upon any heroic qualities you have displayed and bring them into the light by repeating them for anyone in need of a hero. After all, heroism is differently interpreted by everyone, yet everyone has or even, needs one.
Oprah to move through my own hardships to become the best I can be. Oprah Winfrey is a perfect example when looking for someone who fits the definition of a hero because of her perseverance and positive outlook on life. Oprah is a true hero because she is zealous and persists for what she wants. Winfrey was a persistent young woman in that she never accepted her fate when it was down. "In spite of her miserable home life, Winfrey remained a good student" (UXL Biographies, Oprah). This quote reveals a main trait of Oprah's that makes her successful; she teaches everyone to never let personal problems take the best of you and let it reflect poorly on your work. This sticks to me because I always strive for the very best grades that I can possibly get. I have also had some very tough situations arise in my personal life, yet Oprah inspires me to give my undivided attention to my work when I need to get it done. Also, Oprah never gave up on becoming a show host. In the same biography by UXL Biographies, readers learn that Oprah failed a few times. She still kept trying to become a talk show host and eventually succeeded. These small details about Oprah may seem insignificant when looked at separately, but when they are pieced together, the outcome is a persistent individual who is one of the most successful people in the world.
Oprah fought her way through to be able to accomplish all of her goals and become a prosperous, independent black woman - something that was not easy to do during her rise. This also applies to my personal hero, Shamia Popatia, who is also my older sister. As a child, she suffered social rejection, being a new immigrant from India. There were also some problems with the family at that time. She still kept her focus on her education. She got scholarships and grants and was able to successfully finish college. Then came the second round of her problems. This one was bigger, though. She was not able to get admission into any graduate schools. She waited, never giving up hope. Just three and a half years ago, she was accepted into a private university in Southern California. She was going to become a Doctor in Physical Therapy. Financial problems were a her roommates that never left. She still persisted with her education and she now is a full time doctor in two well-reputed hospitals. Both of these strong women are exceptional because of their courage that they displayed even in the hardest of times. Both were not white, both were not financially well off, both were children from struggling backgrounds. Yet both of them broke social stereotypes to become someone extraordinary to whom I now look up to. Their mindset of achieving what they set out to achieve is what makes both of them my heroes.
I have learned from my heroes to prove the best of me and never let anything get in my way in doing so. If I would ever be able to meet Oprah, I would ask her, "What kept you going in your pursuit of achieving your goals?" This is important to me and it may be for many other people because there is always that moment when life seems to cascade around you and you just need one reason to keep going, which, at the time, you can't seem to find. So why should you not give up? What guarantee is there of any of us ordinary people becoming extraordinary?
Step One: Education
After an extensive three years of clinical, research, and more, Shamia graduated graduate school in May of 2015.
Step Two: Qualifications
With vigorous study sessions with our younger sister and me, Shamia aced her Boards and became a certified Doctor in Physical Therapy.
Step Three: Work
Being a doctor is hard work but, it is also fun. Shamia has developed great friend who she goes out with after work many times.