What leads to every hero’s downfall?
The flames danced and scurried in a frenzy throughout the burning house. Pitch black smoke already hung thick in the air. And a muffled cry for help can be faintly heard in the midst of the groans of the burning building.
One lone firefighter dove into the thick of the flames and began systematically checking each and every room. He was continuously yelling, “Is anyone in here?” He frantically flipping chairs and furniture to scan the ground for any signs of limp bodies. He was especially looking for a little girl.
As the ground floor was cleared, he knew that precious time was ticking away. The house’s tortured moans were becoming increasingly more frequent and hoarse. The firefighter knew that this dying building could not hold up its own smoldering burden much longer.
He charged up the burning staircase to the second floor and continued to yell, “Is anyone in here?” And to his shock, he heard a faint cough come behind a closed door. He immediately bashed it down to find the small shadow of a coughing and wheezing little girl.
He picked up her limp body in his powerful arms, but suddenly realized she had stopped breathing. Even though all his training warned against it, his instinct took over. He tore off his oxygen mask and pressed it hard against her face. He desperately yelled, “BREATHE!” For this was his very own daughter who was dying.
His eyes began to sting with the smoke in his eyes. But he continued to press the mask hard against his daughter’s face as he slowly decided down the stairs. Everything was beginning to look a bit blurry with each step he took. His body was starting to feel strangely light. Even though walls of flame burned brightly around him, everything suddenly turned pitch black. He passed out with his daughter in his arms. And no one emerged from the burning building that fateful day.
Many times we want to be the hero who saves the day. But often times no one ends up being saved, when we forget to care for ourselves and our own needs as well.