Something I’ve learned in my twenty-plus years working with kids is that they all need a hero. Every. Single. One. Someone to look up to. Someone to pick them up when they fall. Someone to be strong when they are weak and afraid. Someone super… or even just ordinary. Ordinary actions from an ordinary person become heroic in the eyes of a child. There are a lot of things you don’t need in order to be a super hero.
You don’t need a mask and a cape to be a hero. Even super heroes have weaknesses. Kids aren’t looking for perfect, they’re looking for real. And believe me, they see through the act. Be yourself. Be vulnerable. Say you’re sorry when you need to. You’ll teach them self-confidence and honesty. The true character of a hero.
You don’t have to have x-ray vision to be a hero. You don’t need to see through someone, you just need to see them. And really look. Are they hurting? Are they lost? Are they lonely? A simple hug, a kind word, or a little guidance might be all they need.
You don’t have to fly to be a hero. Kids can zoom around the room all on their own. Sometimes, they fall. Sometimes, life knocks them down, and they can’t get back up. They need you. The grown up. They need you to pick them up and dust them off. Bend down and offer them a hand. Pay attention to what they are struggling with. Be willing to admit your own struggles. Lift them back up and watch them soar!
You don’t need super strength to be a hero. A lot of things can be fixed with the right word from a real friend. True strength is sticking with them, even when it’s not much fun. Kids need that. And sometimes, they just need super glue.
You don’t need super speed to be a hero. Slow and steady wins the race. Some heroes just need to keep showing up. Keep showing they care, and they aren’t going to give up. You’ll need patience. Maybe a big dash of stubborn. Hang in there. I promise it’ll be worth it.
You don’t need super powers to be a super hero. Be extraordinary in ordinary, everyday life. Give a hug. Smile. Touch a hand to touch a heart. Every child needs a hero, so does every adult. Someone needs you. Go be super!