Are you being brave?

Amy, one of the students at the college where I work, walked into my office. She looked down and sad. I walked over to her, sat down and said ‘What’s up?’

Today she’d decided to wear a wig for the first time at college. It was her first chance to outwardly express how she felt on the inside. On this momentous day, filled with nerves and suspense, she walked down the hallway and waited for people’s responses.

She went on to tell me that her boyfriend had ignored her all day, her friends said she looked weird and people in the bathroom said she should use the men’s toilet. 

I looked at her and said – ‘Wow, you’ve been so brave’.

When we think of the word brave, some of us might think of soldiers, doctors, rock climbers or superheroes… we might not think of someone like Amy.

When she sat in front of me I saw someone who wanted so desperately to live how she felt inside, to have a different haircut, to dress uniquely and, despite not knowing if people would accept her, she gave it a go anyway.

That to me is so brave. 

Brave = wearing what you feel like – maybe not what’s in fashion.

Brave = instead of spreading rumours we stand up for our friends. 
Brave = dedicating time to study the subjects that we love. 
Brave = having no make-up days in public. 
Brave = trying hard at your hobbies. 
Brave = breaking stereotypes. 
Brave = being you. 

Seeing Amy made me realise that being brave isn’t a feeling, it’s a decision, a choice to be true, to choose the unpopular option.

Are you being brave?

By Jess Cooper

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