Archive | June, 2013

Instinctual Super Hero

27 Jun

Have you ever wondered what you would do in a split-second reaction scenario? For example, any life threatening situation where you were a witness to harm being placed on another human being. Would you run to the aid of another human being who is in harm’s way knowing you are possibly putting yourself at risk? There are many brave stories to be told about our neighbors who are Instinctual Super Hero’s. We define Instinctual Super Hero as a term for those people around us who, when in the moment, step up to help, get involved, and care about the safety and well-being of other human beings. The Boston Marathon Bombing for instance, we watched creation of many Instinctual Super Hero’s. It makes one think what would I do? How would I react?

I experienced the intensity of becoming an Instinctual Super Hero this weekend. I shared the abridged version of this experience on my Facebook page but I wanted an opportunity to share it on a broader spectrum to anyone interested in the insanity of life.

The story goes:

A random course of events delays my departure as I grab a bottle of water on my way to the car. I finally find myself behind the wheel of my truck. I decide to head over to the local wine shop to purchase a bottle of bubbly for my 3 year anniversary approaching in the next few days. My mind is heavily occupied with the internal battle over resigning from my current profession. The experience was making me question some core beliefs.

I pull in front of the wine store, park my car and then fumble around in my bag for my wallet. All the while, I am gazing toward the store’s front door and make a visual connection to a woman who is standing to the right with a baby stroller. I continue lost in my own thoughts as I glance up again to see the same woman’s hair starting to smolder with fire. I see her frantically moving to put out a very small flame. It looks like she has it under control and I think to myself there is nothing worse than the odor of burnt hair and thought back to the few times it has happened amongst friends in a totally non-threatening manner. 

Mind you it must have been about a second or two. It was enough time for me to look down and back up. What I see when I look up at her is unbelievable. She has been unable to get out the flame. The flame is beginning to quickly get larger and I see it move from the tips of her hair to the middle of her hair at a speed that was frightening. It was in this moment I realized this flame was going to engulf this woman’s head.

All I remember is thinking I have to get there fast enough. I don’t remember looking down for the water bottle nor grabbing it. The next thing I know my door is swung open and I am running out as fast as I can to put water over this woman’s head. I am met by another neighbor who joins me in dousing this woman with water. We were joined by another man who had a towel to put out the very last of it. The flames had burnt through the entire right side of her hair all the way to her scalp. She walked away unscathed. I was relieved (to put it mildly) that there was not a burn mark on her. Totally unbelievable. Totally changed from this experience.

There is a line from the song “Some Nights”, the line is “What do I stand for?” I have used that line as a sort of mantra for strength in challenging situations these past few months. I always knew I stood for kindness, for action, for excellence. I always knew I would stand up for others and act bravely. While I hope to never find myself in a similar situation. It feels good to know there are a few new additions to the Instinctual Super Hero movement. I know “what I stand for” do you.