PPC Essay Contest First Place Winner – The Courage to Rise

PPC Essay Contest First Place Winner – The Courage to Rise

First place – Hanah Escosia

The Courage to Rise

What does it take for you to rise every morning?  Do you need the blaring sound of an alarm clock to wake you up, or do your eyes automatically open as you hear your mother yell at you reminding you how late you are for school?  Fortunately, I don’t need either of the two. I am an early bird who wakes up hours before anyone in the house does.  But whether you are a morning person or not, we all have one necessity that enables us to get up every day.  That necessity is called courage.  Courage is the alarm clock that wakes us up.  It is the morning coffee that energizes and enables us to get through another God-given day.  In the light of this pandemic, I am able to see the importance of courage in our day to day lives.

Through these tough times, frontliners are the backbone of our country.  My father, who happens to be a custodian, reminded me of how lucky we are to have these courageous people.  He gets up every morning, grabs his coffee, takes a shower, kisses us goodbye, and then leaves for work.  The time he spends before his second job at the grocery store is barely enough to eat, leaving a little to no time for rest.  The same could be said for my mom who, despite working a part time job, has to wake up early in the morning to help us prepare for school.  As we all sit for supper, we share stories of how our days went.  My father cleaned classrooms and washrooms, and sanitized high-touch areas in the school he works at.  My mother talks about the nice customer she met while working at the front-end of Costco.  The way they narrate their stories make their work sound simple, but pondering over the nature of their jobs, their duties are more important than it seems.  Without custodians, establishments will be so infested that we won’t even be able to take a single step in.  Without store associates, we won’t be able to get our basic necessities.  Along with the responsibilities come the dangers of working in the frontlines.  Their exposure to the virus is higher.  Doctors and nurses are directly in contact with patients.  Custodians handle high-risk areas.  Store associates may unknowingly be talking to an asymptomatic patient.  Their courage is unparalleled in the face of this global pandemic.

What brings me great awe is how my parents could look so exhausted today and yet they are able to face the next day all energized.  Regardless of their workload, they never fall short in being the parents that we need.  They make time for us.  They manage to juggle serving their family and their community.  Along with hard work, dedication is a requirement because their jobs require more than the bare minimum.  Whenever I look at their faces, I am able to see the reason they do their jobs.  More than to provide for me and my sister, they do it to serve.

Courage is indeed another word for bravery.  However, bravery, contrary to the common belief, is not synonymous to facing big and tough enemies or using iron fists.  Because we connotate such grandeur to the word courage, we tend to overlook its existence in the simple actions we execute, just like opening a door for an elderly.  Serving other people is just as courageous as facing a fire-breathing dragon.  From the troops, who safeguard our country, up to the bus drivers, custodians, and teachers, they are all courageous for they choose to dedicate themselves to service.  They are the heroes of today.  I am fortunate to have heroes as my parents.  As we thank God for another day, may we also thank Him for giving these people the courage to rise.

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