“Not every Hero is fictional”

      It’s funny how the definition of the word “Hero” can change very quickly and it can mean all sorts of things depending on who you’re talking to. I remember as a kid I would fantasize about becoming or having the powers of a super hero. As a teen I remember fantasizing of playing basketball like many of my favorite NBA basketball players especially when they would shoot the buzzer beater and become the “hero” of the team. 


As I got older and especially now that I am a father, the word “Hero” has a new meaning. My life quickly changed when I arrived home for Christmas from college and found out that my mom had been diagnosed with cancer and was about to have surgery. I found myself not knowing how to take it all in and I wasn’t aware how serious this horrific disease is. After her surgery I remember that my brother and I didn’t want to continue our studies so we could stay by her side until she recovered. She knew this would happen so before we ever had a chance tell her our plans and ask the doctor a million questions, she had already convinced the doctor not to keep her in for observation and send her home that way everything would seem fine and we would return to school. The following summer when we returned for break we found her wearing a wig which once again created mixed emotions for my brother and I. To top things off, as if they were not already bad, my mom was diagnosed with type II diabetes while in chemotherapy.

If you ask me now what the word “Hero” means, my definition wouldn’t include anyone that flies, smashes things or even swings through cities. A “Hero” to me is someone who puts someone else’s needs ahead of their own. A “Hero” is someone who no matter how bad things are, they still find the courage to sacrifice it all. 

After many years she finally told me her small white lie and when I asked her why didn’t she tell us everything that was happening, her response was that her goal has always been for my brother and I to finish school and have the life that she never had. She also shared with me that spiritually this tough time became an experience that brought her closer to God which made her ready for whatever life brought her way. My mom is a cancer survivor. So a “Hero” to me is my mom; I will forever love her and she is the reason why I wear Pink this month.