My childhood heroes were not from a movie. They weren’t sports heroes. They weren’t even famous. My childhood heroes were my mom and dad.
My mom has always been the perfect blend of funny and caring. A nurse by trade, there wasn’t anything my mom couldn’t heal-from a skinned knee when I was learning to ride a bike to a broken heart with my first boyfriend to my change in careers to my husband’s cancer battle. My mom was present-in my life and in each moment-before it was trendy. Early on I learned that friends come and go. I soon learned that although I have some dear friends, having my mom as a best friend made me the luckiest girl on earth.
When I was growing up, I thought my dad was the strongest, smartest dad in the whole world. As an adult I am so glad to know that all those years as a child, I was right. He is still the guy people go to as a source of information for everything. My dad was also busy with a career and his own interests, but he always made time for me. He taught me how to box in our garage. The amazing thing was that I didn’t know that that was unique for a little blonde girl with pigtails. He had heart to heart conversations with me about having confidence in myself and respecting myself in relationships. If I was disappointed in my career, he encouraged me to keep working toward my goals. He has proven to provide me an example of strength-both physically and over the years through life’s ups and downs-emotionally. Many people know my dad as a man of few words. I know him as having an uncanny ability of saying the right thing at the right time. As an adult in her 40’s now, the words “we love you little girl” still melts my heart and has a way of making me feel like everything will be ok because my dad said so.
Over the years my perspective of my heroes has become a source of gratitude regardless of what I face in life. Perhaps my parents couldn’t fly or leap off tall buildings, but they did provide unwavering stability and unconditional love that has lasted my lifetime. My parents were and are my foundation. Some children aspire to be fictional characters or others sadly spend years in therapy over the impact of their relationship with their parents. My parents were my heroes from childhood, I could not fully understand the true gift that is until now-as an adult.