P + usillanimous = PUSILLANIMOUS

pusillanimous\ pyoo-suh-LAN-uh-muhs \ , adjective; 1. Lacking in courage and resolution; contemptibly fearful; cowardly.

I hope I will never be described as pusillanimous. Just the sound of it makes me nauseous.  It sounds like pus, and silly, and something else I can't put my finger on. Yuck.

We all have times of fear, times we lack courage, times our will (resolution) is weak. But I think it takes more than those common times to be described as pusillanimous. It seems like that would have to be an extreme. I am thinking over books and movies and am trying to remember a character I would describe as such. Perhaps Edmund in the Chronicles of Narnia (in the beginning at least). Or how about Bilbo in The Hobbit?  Of course the obvious is The Cowardly Lion in The Wizard of Oz. But all of these characters change in the course of the story. I think that's why we like them. We see that part of ourselves that is lacking in courage or fearful - and we see hope of change, of growing out of our pusillanimous nature. That's why I like good books - they help me see the me I can grow into.

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