Did you get a chance to read last week’s blog about Peeta Mellark? I hope you did because it was a very touching and eye-opening discussion. We learned that Peeta is a giver, but that he can sometimes give a little bit too much of himself and it goes unappreciated.
If you also looked over the worksheet, then you’ll know if you tend to do the same thing, or if there’s more opportunities in your life to give to others…and THAT is truly powerful.
So, it’s time for our final character in The Hunger Games discussion. I’m a little sad because I’ve really enjoyed this blog series. I contemplated doing more characters from the book as well, but I didn’t want to drag it on for too long and I feel that we get a really good perspective from the three main characters.
With that said, let’s move on to the main, main character and our protagonist of the story, Katniss Everdeen.
Katniss is a force to be reckoned with. She is full of fire and carries a strength within that isn’t easily deterred. We learn early on in The Hunger Games that her father was killed in a mining accident, along with Gale’s father, which leaves her, and her family, broken and barely surviving.
Katniss becomes the provider for her mother and sister, Primrose. She also becomes the mother figure for Prim, when their real mother shuts down after losing her husband to the accident.
But despite this nurturing side, Katniss hides away another side to her. A side that comes in quite handy when things start to turn for the worse. It’s a willpower and fierce bravery that not only saves her own life in the first book, but also creates her into a leader and a symbolic sign of hope throughout the rest of the books.
Because we’re only talking about the first book in the series for these discussions, let’s take a look at how Katniss embodies both the nurturer and the rebel fighter throughout the story:
She raises her sister, Prim, and becomes the sole provider for the family when her mother gives in to grief around losing her husband.
When Prim is chosen as Tribute for the games, Katniss volunteers in her place, saving her sister from certain death.
Once the training for the games begins, she lets the gamemakers know that she won’t put up with their unfair rules by shooting an arrow through a dummy during a training session.
Within the games, Katniss bonds quickly with Rue, a 12 year old girl, who reminds her a lot of Prim. She makes sure to help and protect her as long as she can.
When Rue is killed, Katniss creates a beautiful burial for the young girl by covering her in flowers.
She proves her bravery throughout the games as she continues to fight and survive, even with tracker jacker venom running through her veins.
At the end of the games, it’s her idea for her and Peeta to consume Nightlock berries and kill themselves when the announcement revokes the promise of two winners. This way, there will be no winners for the Capitol to claim. But her act leads the gamemakers to declare both her and Peeta winners and saves their lives.
Katniss is named the “Girl on Fire”.
Now, I know there is a lot more, but it would take up pages of space. I’ve listed the moments that I feel represent her bravery and nurturing the best. Do you know someone in your own life who is both brave and nurturing?
It seems an odd pairing when you think about it. Yet, Katniss carries both so well.
What can we learn from Katniss to help us heal or grow in our own lives? She NEVER gives up. She’s a fighter and she will fight to the end for what is right and for her loved ones. She doesn’t put up with bull shit, that much is clear in her interactions with the gamemakers, and her “always drunk” mentor, Haymitch.
But she also cares deeply for those who hold a special place in her heart: Prim and Rue, for example. She will do anything to protect them and provide for them regardless of what punishment may come out of it.
I would suggest that what we can learn from Katniss is bravery and fighting for what is right. We may not face the same challenges as she does in the book (literally fighting for our lives or the lives of our loved ones), but I can guarantee we all have moments in our lives where standing up is the right thing do to, even if it singles us out from the crowd.
So, if you don’t have a specific moment in your life right now that you can use, just think about how you would handle a situation where bravery was the only way to do the right thing. For example, if you were to see someone being pushed around on the street, would you keep walking, or would you find a way to help them? If you had something important you needed to say, knowing that it would cause someone else pain or disappointment, would you keep it inside to avoid conflict, or would you speak up from a place of love to clear your conscious and spare the other person even more pain?
You know what Katniss would do.
In my own life, Katniss taught me how to stand up for myself and find courage even when everything seemed to be against me. Reading her character was the start of a path to growing my own inner strength and discovering how much bravery I actually had when faced with difficult decisions.
Think it over for a while and take time to download the worksheet below. Katniss is a beautiful example of bravery and nurturing. We can learn a lot from her.