The Hero of This Story

Michelle McKernan serves on Red Cedar Review‘s social media. In this inspirational piece, she makes sure to remind us that we’re ultimately our own worst critics when it comes to writing the stories of our lives.


We often read or watch our favorite protagonists with a sense of longing. We watch or read their character development and don’t look at their mistakes as them failing, but as them growing and learning to be the hero we see them as. The problem with real life is that we focus so diligently on whether we are where we feel like we need to be in our paths that we fail to understand that we are only in the arch of our development.

Think about it: if we focused on ourselves as if we were characters in a novel, then maybe we could see that we are not failures but protagonists on the path to our true destinies. No one learns of their strengths without first finding out their weaknesses, and it is unreasonable to assume that we, ourselves, are any different. So next time when you feel downcast and think that you will never be the person you think you should be, focus on how a reader would view your story. They would look at your failures and weaknesses and instead of judgment; they would commend you on how far you have come and all the adversities that you have overcome. You are only on the beginning chapters of your life. Take a breath and remember to turn the page—it’ll be okay.

You are the hero of this story.

—Michelle McKernan

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