“Don’t meet your heroes” that’s the age old saying isn’t it, the idea being that they will disappoint in real life. Well I think it’s a load of shit, I say, no I insist, that you try to meet your heroes.
I can say with certainty that I have never regretted meeting any of my heroes, from authors to beauty gurus, musicians to chefs I’ve met a lot. I make a point of going to meet them. I pay for the privilege to hear them speak at events, I stand in line to meet them at book signings, if they matter to me, I make it so.
Recently I met Caroline Hirons for the first time, we’re mates on social in the way that you can only be with someone who’s in the public domain and you have never actually met. I started following her on social and reading her blog because I valued her expertise, but I continued to engage with her because we have similar interests, SVU, 80’s rock and a dislike for twattish people.
When I saw that Caroline would be within touching distance *sounds creepy, it’s not honestly* I knew I had to be there, I wanted to pick her brains about skin, I wanted to chat to her about life and most of all I wanted to meet in reality the person I liked so much online. Whilst I am all for fan-girling, that’s not what this was, it was more like meeting a pen pal!
She was as expected awesome in reality, exceptionally kind and gave the best hug ever! It got me to thinking as I was on the train home that the reason I have never been disappointed when I meet a “hero” is because I choose them well. Now that might seem like an obvious thing, but hear me out…
I think that one of the main reasons that people are let down by meeting there heroes or idols is that they have placed them so high on a pedestal that there is no chance at all of the very real human living up to the hype.
“A hero is an ordinary individual who finds the strength
to persevere and endure in spite of overwhelming obstacles”.
– Christopher Reeve
Want to know when you end up disappointed by your heroes, when you meet them for the wrong reasons, when you go to be in awe of them, to be wow’ed by them or moved by them. Instead the best reason to meet a hero is because as much as you love who they are, what they do, why they do it, you want to meet the real person behind the talent.
When I met Caitlin Moran I cried on her, not a delicate tear or two, all out bawling! It’s the only time I have overly reacted to meeting someone and to be honest she couldn’t have handled it in a more Caitlin way, she gave me a fucking huge, tight, love filled hug, kissed my forehead and told me I was loved. I sobbed to her that her book had helped me voice feeling I had been having for years and for that I was thankful. Once the tears subsided she got me a gin and we chatted a little, I realised that it wasn’t meeting FAMOUS AUTHOR Caitlin Moran that was so special, it was meeting Caitlin, friend, mum and all round wonderful human.
The same can be said for the Pixiwoo sisters, I have watched Sam & Nic on YouTube since they were sitting on the floor in their front room doing famous makeup recreations, from drag looks to Victoria Beckham I was hooked, in fact I owe almost all of my makeup skills to them! I buy the brushes they make, I value their opinions and when they brought out a book I snapped up the chance to meet them and get it signed.
As I stood in the queue waiting to meet them, I uhhmed and ahhed about what to talk to them about, and then just like that I was stood in front of them and Nic asked me about hair braiding as we were chatting like two girls meeting in the toilets of a bar for the first time and having a gossip. It was a fleeting meeting, but one that sticks with me.
The thing I value the most about meeting my heroes is being able to tell them the impact they have had on me, from the way I blend out my lip liner to my ability to voice my feminism without concern.
I urge you to meet your heroes, stand in line for book signings, see their shows and wait at the theatre doors, champion them and they will never disappoint, I promise you!