I have often been a fraidy cat about the simplest things. I remember back when I was a child and being frightened of leaving home to go to school — it was as if I feared that my family would not be there when I got back from school or that I wouldn’t know what to do in school. All my life I’ve had similar fears about many things — being able to do a good job and succeed at my work, worrying whether I’d grow up to become an independent individual who could stand on his own two feet. And, each time with each new worry, I would somehow find a way to master my fears so that they wouldn’t interfere with my life. I didn’t want to lead a life of fear, I wanted instead a life of joy and accomplishment and for the most part that is what I was able to achieve — although it never was easy for me.
I do believe that deep down each of us is brave in different ways and in different situations.
For example, there is the person who saves another person’s life, such as when someone falls off the subway platform and the other person rescues him.
Then there is the person who finds the courage to leave his or her country in order to go to another land and start a new life. That person is very brave, too, because starting a new life in a strange land and with a different language is very, very difficult.
Then there’s the person who is very shy, but who leaves the house in the morning to try to find a job and make a living. He somehow overcomes his fear.
There is the mother or father who works very long hours at a hard job in order to earn money to help support the family. That person is very brave, too.
There is also the person who is afraid of the local bully, but gathers his or her courage to stand up to the bully and tell him off.
So tell me about your own life and the time when you were brave. What was the brave deed or act you did? How did you feel – frightened or confident? Was it hard for you to be brave?
Or, if you wish, write about someone you know who has done a brave deed. Tell me who that person is and what he or she did.
Remember, too, that being a writer is a brave thing to do — it shows you are willing to think deeply about important things and express them in words that may be read and heard.