Wednesday, June 3, 2015


Apparently the meaning of the word courage comes from the letters cour-, which means "of the heart."

I share this fact because many people have called Bruce Jenner, now know as Caitlyn Jenner, courageous. There are also those who think the adjective is misplaced in its usage, pointing to those who are in the military as an example of what is courageous.

There have been many times people have used that term in terms of someone dealing with cancer - "their courageous battle." When it comes to people using that in relation to me, I have struggled. I have just felt that I have been doing what I needed to do. No more. No less.  I even have a quote that says something to the effect that what someone might call courageous in regard to another is "just" that person being themself. I suspect many who have been called that might not even think about what they did. They just did what had to be done.

I can't help but wonder where those who would deny Caitlyn's courage would stand in regard to a person dealing with cancer. At the very least, are they consistent in their labeling?

I have been told that I somehow take away something from another when I deflect that term's usage in relation to me. For that reason, I have spent time really thinking about this. Knowing the word's origin allows me to accept the term for myself, as I have spent the last three years in my heart in a way that I had not been before. 

If living from one's heart is courageous, then both Caitlyn and I qualify. And so does anyone else who does something from their heart, whether they run into a burning building, confront someone with a gun or a another who is a bully, are in the military, or lives a life many would call unorthodox.

I realize, though, that the mileage of others may vary. That is partly why I struggled as I did. Quite frankly, for as much as I logically get all that I just shared with you, there is a part of me that still finds it to be a tough word in relation to me. Perhaps it has something to do with what we have been taught "should" be labelled "brave."

Not sure what it is, though. But could certainly see why there might be some who would take issue while others would cheer. Those who cheer have likely realized something that those who don't, haven't.

It would be nice if we could all get on the same page about things. After all, we do act like that is what we want. But the problem is that that is an OK thought, desire - until something we believe doesn't fit the mold that others hold - and then we are the ones on the "wrong" side of the societal divide.


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