If you are teacher, you already know that every hero needs to connect with a mentor before embarking on the journey. A guide who sees the possibility in you before you see it for yourself, the mentor does not travel into the woods with the hero. Trials are part of the journey. Failures par for the course. There is no rubric for how to best slay the dragon. The hero must brave the night alone to grow. The mentor encourages and prepares the young hero.
Sometimes we forget how meaningful we are on the hero’s journey. Viola Davis reminded me. We may never know the exact moment we rescue a life by being an empathetic listener, dissolving shame. We may not have intentionally scripted the words that unlocked an imagination and planted a seed. Yet we know we are in the presence of future heroes. We must be mindful to echo Viola Davis’ words everyday – “The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.” Becoming that individual is the greatest hero’s quest of all. And we have the privilege of being a mentor on that journey for so many heroes.