This I Believe

Emily - Newark, Ohio
Entered on November 8, 2007
Age Group: 18 - 30
Themes: family, legacy, work

I believe that true heroes come in all shapes and sizes. Superman and Wonder Woman with their flashy costumes and supernatural powers are among the first images to emerge in my teenage mind when the word “hero” is brought to my attention.

After pondering this single word, I decided that the true meaning of a hero is one who is honest, hard working, and puts the happiness of others before their own personal pleasure. This is the true definition of a hero. Hopefully, everyone knows of a hero and has one that plays a role in their everyday life. If not, look harder, because chances are that you are surrounded by some pretty amazing people and they will not necessarily be changing into their leotard in a phone booth.

My mother is one of those heroic people and I can only hope that I turn to be just as wonderful as she is. I have two siblings, and when we were all toddlers my mom went back to school. She did this so that my family would have a better life. My mom was a full-time LPN, a full-time nursing student, and let’s not forget, a full-time mother of three crazy kids. While my mom was going through school, no one ever heard her complain about how hard it was, and it is doubtful that giving up ever crossed her mind and that is the true attitude of a hero.

My mom graduated at the top of her class, her grade point average was flawless, and untouched, 4.0. At her graduation she was given the “Heart of Nursing Award” that still to this day sits shining on her dresser. I will never forget what she looked like in her graduation gown, she was so happy; her dark curly hair sticking out from under her cap and tears of joy flowing onto her rosy checks from her brown eyes. My entire family was there and we were all so proud. When I was looking at the class I remember asking my grandmother “how come mom and only a couple other people have gold tassels on their caps?” And she had explained to my five year old self that the tassel was given to her because of how hard she worked. Just like he award, her graduation and honors tassel are hanging on her dresser.

A am working my way through college at a local restaurant where I see a lot of people that I know; however, recently a group of nurses and doctors came up to me and asked if my mother’s name is Marlene, and in fact, it is. That is when they started spewing about how great of a nurse my mom is, and that no matter how busy the emergency room gets my mom always keeps her cool, and her simile. After they told me all of this, they declared that there was no other word to describe her but “amazing.”

After having this conversation with my mother’s coworkers, I changed my major: I am now a nursing student. I can only hope that I graduate at the top of my class, and that I will be able to keep my cool, and a positive attitude in a chaotic hospital. Being able to be an impressive nurse is just an everyday task for my heroic mother.

Maybe this Christmas I will have a custom costume made for her. It should have a symbol that is unforgettable, something that will describe how passionate, caring, and loving she is, and I would make it in her favorite colors: red and blue. Perhaps instead of a leotard I should get her what she really deserves, a fluffy cotton rob with matching slippers. But if I did decide to get her a costume, I will probably have to get measurements and order it online. It will have to be specially made because heroes come in all shapes and sizes.