Superman. Jose Rizal. Your father, your mother. The Avengers.
We call them heroes. If not all, a lot of us look up to them, admire them, consider them as individuals with exceptional and noble qualities, individuals with great courage. But what does it really take to be a hero? Do we have to die first do deserve the title? Are supernatural powers necessary? And if a person lacks physical capabilities, comes short with the resources, he cannot be someone we can call a hero?
Anybody could be a hero. Even if you are a nobody in the society. In truth, the simplest act of kindness, of selflessness, of greatheartedness could be enough for you to be a hero.
I could be a hero. Despite my littleness in this huge, vast world, I think I could be called a hero. My simple acts, my simple tenacity, my simple altruistic qualities, my simplicity makes me a hero. I am no Superman, no Jose Rizal. I am a nobody compared to my parents, compared to those fictional characters we see on television that we call superheroes. But I could be a hero. I am a hero.
For the past years of my life, even before I entered the University of the Philippines, I have already had in my heart the desire to cause a change. I have dreamt too big, I wished to change the world. But how can someone so petty like me change this world?
The change should start within. That is the answer.
I have changed and am continuously changing. Even little by little. Even through the simplest ways. I have felt a different kind of metamorphosis happening to me. That kind which will not just do good to me, but to the people around me as well, to the world as well, I strongly hope. I am studying harder and smarter. I try hard to make every day of my life productive. Being an Iskolar ng Bayan, and all the more Islolar para sa Bayan, I hope to bring change, to make a difference. I, being involved socially, politically, am a hero.
I am not being boastful or anything. I am just trying to say that since I decided to be involved, since I had the courage to cause change, I was a hero, with God’s help.
Bayan? Does the title make sense? ‘I’ completes Bayani. I complete Bayani.
-Elizabeth Y. Borromeo