1. Of a person, displaying or possessing courage.
2. Of an action, that requires courage.
(person) bold, brave, hardy, valorous
(act) bold, brave, heroic
Courage: From Old French corage (French: courage), from Latin cor, "heart".
Also known as bravery, will, intrepidity, and fortitude, is the ability to confront fear, pain, risk/danger, uncertainty, or intimidation. "Physical courage" is courage in the face of physical pain, hardship, or threat of death, while "moral courage" is the courage to act rightly in the face of popular opposition, shame, scandal, or discouragement.
- from Wikipedia/Wiktionary
When it comes to true heroism or who my heroes are, there is no way I would put myself in their category, as far as courage. I don't have any specific tales of heroism for myself at this point. My personal experience, of what I consider courageous in me, is very much separate from that. It is a kind of dramatic overstatement that helps me to weather what are really just the everyday stresses of life.
I was 28 when I discovered, through the observation of a friend, that I possessed a certain kind of heart and spirit. It was something I had not considered and/or taken seriously in a long time. To actually acknowledge that I might have some potential meant that I would have to begin to act on that, and up until that point, I was not ready to face it.
It was one of those perfect nights in San Francisco. Warm enough to wear sexy strappy sandals, cool enough to not break too much of a sweat. I was going to dinner with my boyfriend at the time. We met on a group outing to a rock show in the Mission District. I was introduced to him through a previous boyfriend who dumped me (I think he felt guilty and wanted to help me find someone new.). He was a handsome man from Germany with a master's degree in linguistics. At the time, he was working as a coder as a way to support his personal dream of playing jazz keyboard. He wore a black leather jacket and rode a crotch rocket...imagine a blond-ish Johnny Depp with little wire-rim glasses. He smelled of leather and tobacco, and at the time was successfully teaching himself French. Needless to say, I was smitten.
We went to a couple of jazz clubs in Chinatown that night, and heard some great sounds. Then, we decided on a French restaurant and sat in the pretty alfresco section: bricked-in ivy-laced walls, twinkly fairy lights under the stars. We chatted that night about a lot of different things. At one point I began to yammer on about how inadequate I felt in general, and was comparing my life's journey to so many of those I admired. I was lamenting how there was no way, in my own lifetime, I could ever live up to my own personal standard of what I felt was true accomplishment; particularly not with the mental baggage I had sorted through up to that point and had yet to completely let go of. He interrupted me and said: "I've always seen you as a courageous person. You shouldn't be so hard on yourself. You've overcome quite a lot." I don't know if that's entirely true, but since that day, I've decided to believe it -- to attempt to apply whatever courage is in me, in my own way, to my own journey.