Menu Close

Heroically Perceptive

#HAWMC Day 6: Your Hero

Everyone has someone they look up to – a person they go to for advice, an individual you admire or idolize. It could be your partner, a family member, coworker, or someone famous. Who are they and what makes them awesome in your eyes?

From Wikipedia:

A hero or heroine is a person or character in literature who, in the face of danger and adversity or from a position of weakness, displays courage or self-sacrifice—that is, heroism—for some greater good.

Is heroism subjective?

What if you think someone is a hero, and I do not, does that make them a hero or negate their heroism?

I ask, because someone called me their hero. I do what I usually do and get all blushy and deny any sort of conceptual idea.

But…does it negate, then, their own perspective of a hero?

Do I have a hero? I don’t really know. Not in the sense that you’ll obviously call a person who saves someone from a raging river (wherein I may call it unnecessary endangerment…not that I would…but I could) a hero.

I think, for me…it’s someone who fights against ignorance, stigma and taboo. It’s someone who consistently does whateveritisthattheydo. It’s someone, maybe even myself, who continues to get up in the morning to fight a disease that alters tissue cells or systemic function when they no longer want to…but they feel that to do so will help someone else…someone they may never know or meet in their lifetime.


I have so many people who inspire me so much, it has changed either my perspective or my habits or my opinions for the greater good.

Maybe that’s how I define a hero. To “Me.”

Dr. Maryanne Pearce, June 2014
Dr. Maryanne Pearce, June 2014

One of my heroes is Dr. Maryanne Pearce. She completed her Doctoral thesis entitled, An Awkward Silence: Missing and Murdered Vulnerable Women and the Canadian Justice Systema feat in an of itself, while also concurrently experiencing a significant health issue. She is a foundation pillar in her community and many have benefited from her guidance, both spiritually and in their interpersonal relationships with her. She does taxes for women’s shelters. A. Lot. Of. Taxes. She donates her time and energy, knowledge and skills. She fosters Great Pyranees dogs, arranges adoptions and provides a level of care upon which every rescue should base their mission statement. There’s more. A lot more. (image from Northern Territories Federation of Labour, click the link to see the promotional material) She has good days and bad days. She keeps on keepin’ on.

Based on my definition, Maryanne has, without even knowing: 1) changed my perspective on how I can personify being an empowered, spiritual woman, 2)  keeps me setting goals for myself and to keep “Do.”ing, and 3) That people, no matter the circumstance, are *always* worth it.

To push further, does a hero, then quantify themselves as being a hero if whateveritisthattheydo enables you to become a better person, to have a higher esteem of yourself and, perhaps, push your ordinary into extraordinary.

amanda LlamaSomeone else who is doing that very same thing that I’ve been following for over the past year…pushing their ordinary into extraordinary…is a friend who is epically pushing the boundaries of stigma…of taboo…and of personal safety to her and her family…in order to bring awareness to the issues facing the LGBTQ community and her “Gutsy” as Gutsy transitions in a world full of wolves in sheep’s clothing:

The Maven of Mayhem

Goals & achievements, yo!
Goals & achievements, yo!

Based on my definition, Amanda has, without even knowing: 1) changed my perspective on how far my city still has to go to recognize humanity within its boundaries, 2) keeps me blogging on the days I don’t want to for the people who don’t ultimately want to keep hearing my pleas for awareness, and 3) That friends and friendship are worth the effort to develop, work at and grow in order to provide a foundation to one’s very soul. And? She has set the #selfie bar SO feckin’ high now, I’m always on the lookout for opportunities to…y’know…do better. *shifty eyes* My Llamas (LeeAnn, Amanda, Louise, Caroline and Angela…who introduced us to “The Maven”) have changed my “Everything.”, and I am the better because of it.

Someone called me their hero. I did what I usually do and got all blushy and denied any sort of conceptual idea of being any kind of hero at all.

Then, I had another perspective:

By extrapolation, after recognizing that I’ve become a better person with a higher esteem of myself as an empowered woman by continually pushing myself beyond my ordinary and into the extraordinary ability to do whateveritisthatIdo within the chaos of my systemic disease in a life I question each and every morning I open my eyes and heave my ailing body off of my bedside…

…am I my own hero?

A SuperHero with hair, yo!
A SuperHero with hair, yo!


True story.


  1. Maya

    I think it’s PHENOMENAL if you can recognize yourself as your own hero. So many people tend to doubt ourselves and negate the good we do as “just part of what we do and who we are”. By blogging, speaking out, and helping inspire others with your condition and other chronic illnesses, you’re doing something that so many are afraid to do, and that’s awesome. I’ve been enjoying reading your posts with #HAWMC. This is truly a great perspective.

    • Brynn

      Thank you, Maya! I feel we’re often constrained by the societal perception that thinking of ourselves is “ego”…and that’s not what we’re all about, right? Example, yesterday’s post about the news about “You!”? Awkward. Uncomfortable. I didn’t want to come off as pompous or snobby. Yet, I did All of the Things! while managing what I manage. I hope it encourages others to build their esteems. We all do great work. The first to recognize it should be ourselves. 🙂

  2. Heidi

    hero… big word, but it is a personal word as well. Hero, yes we all associate to those who do the “big” things, help hundreds during a catastrophie, but, in my humble opinion, Pattie, you have helped so many people, especially those you do not know, to have a source of inspiration. A hero can be someone inspirational, someone we strive to emulate….. I try not to complain about things that happen in my life, or the pain I may feel, because if Pattie can manage, well then darn it so can I. Is Pattie, larger then life, above everyone else, no, she is… a human, and flawed like the rest of us, and it is because of this that she is my hero, because she is as regular as us but can TRY and SUCCEED in rising above wallowing in it (all the time, we all need to do so from time to time), then I know I can as well.
    Thanks Pattie… you personify Heroism to me.

    • Brynn

      I seem to be suffering from some kind of leaking from my ocular orbs, Heidi. As always, you make me feel like I can take over the world. And, the days I can’t? You’re still there to cheer me through. Love you, ladyfriend xoxo

  3. Amanda Jette Knox

    Oh, my sweet friend. Those were kind words, and I thank you so much for them. I’m totally glad I’m not wearing mascara right now.

    But really, I’m going to agree that you personify heroism. You really do. Also you look way better in a cape. Keep doing what you do, because it’s inspirational. xoxo

    • Brynn

      Y’know, sometimes people watch us and are taking inspiration from things or actions or deeds we would never believe. Seemingly insignificant, or even, mundane. You’ve continued your journey with grace, with your family, with your power and your voice…set goals…plugged through them…and came out on the flip side more colourful than ever. You fucking shine like a diamond in the sky, ladyfriend, and I cannot thank you enough for your “keep on keepin’ on”. I notice. I always notice. But, not in a stalker kind of way or anything. I simply haven’t the time. 😉 xoxo I just wanted you to know that where words might fail in describing my inspiration, my soul bursts with the effects.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.