Still, the exact route we travel is uniquely our own. No two are alike. Sure, there are footsteps all around—some in front or back or right alongside. Several walk with us for a time and then branch off in other directions. A few disappear completely and we're forced to plod ahead without them one step at a time. The path forward is often shrouded in shadows and filled with unforeseen battles, but how we choose to fight through is up to us.
My weapon of choice? I try to be a hero. Now, don’t laugh. There’s no cape or mask involved. I don’t shoot sorceress lightning from my fingertips (well, unless the kids are fighting). No, my heroic powers are much more subtle. It’s there, in the way I interact with my sons. In making an effort to embrace the positives and not dwell on the negatives. In giving back to others (even if it’s a gesture as simple as a smile). I don’t always succeed, of course. I’m not perfect. Sometimes the battle weighs on me and I get tired. My sword arm grows heavy, my patience wears thin. But, I keep trying because I know that if I fail one day, I'll still have a chance to get it right another.
Life. Is. Hard. And, it’s one of the reasons I so love writing heroic fantasy. We all need heroes. That symbolic proof that good trumps evil. The knight in shining armor. The superhero. Or, someone closer to home. The parent who chases away monsters that lurk under beds. The soldier who sacrifices all that is dear to keep others safe. The stranger who lifts people up with a random act of kindness. Heroes inspire. They keep our fears at bay. They allow us to believe in magic, even if for a short time.
This quote sums up the power of heroic fantasy for me.
“She'll kill me if she finds you in here. Can you climb trees? Tell me you can climb a tree!"
Patch grinned, "I can fly.”
― Becca Fitzpatrick, Hush, Hush
Be a hero in 2014. Fly. I'm guessing that people who think they are heroes can change the world. I know that I couldn’t fly without all of you. Writing is such a huge source of joy in my life. Your comments, your reviews, and the fact that you read my words provide the wind that keeps me in the air. Thank you for allowing me to soar this year.
Happy holidays to you and yours!