We may not realize it most of the time, but the superheroes we admire on the silver screen and the books we read can teach us many life lessons.
Most of these characters lived a tough life before they saved the world, and though we don’t have powers like them, we related to their hardships and learned from their victories. In their own ways, these icons have inspired us to become stronger and better versions of ourselves.
Like these superheroes, John Quinn—also known as “Jadiant” on Instagram—has been through many difficulties in his life. In 2003, 95% of Jadiant’s 4-year-old body got burned when his dog knocked over a candle while he was playing in a barn behind his family’s house. His sister, Leah, was able to pull him out of the fire, but the extent of the burns had doctors doubting if he would make it through the night.
Thankfully, he survived, but the fire left him severely disfigured. Since then, he has endured over 100 surgeries, grueling physical therapy, and relentless bullying from the other kids.
Many would have lost the will to live when faced with this situation, but not Jadiant. This young man from Millington, Tennessee, didn’t let his experiences affect his character. In fact, he used them to inspire others to love themselves for who they are and encourage them to always look at the bright side of things.
With all that he has gone through, it’s safe to say that Jadiant is superhuman. But even strong people like him have their own heroes, and if he had to choose a favorite, it would be Deadpool, the character played by actor Ryan Reynolds.
So when he had to cosplay a character back in January, Jadiant automatically picked him as the perfect icon to emulate. In an Instagram post, the 21-year-old shared a photo of him doing the splits while donning an impressive full-body Deadpool costume.
“Deadpool has honestly made me way more confident. Anyone who has read or watched anything about Deadpool, knows his face and body are pretty messed up. So it’s only natural that I cosplay him,” he explained in the post’s caption.
Authenticity has always been important to Jadiant, so he opted not to wear a mask to show his “true self.”
“This is me, and I’m not Ashamed about it. Deadpool is icy clean, and he’s helped my self esteem so much. I’m owning who I am, and cosplaying Deadpool makes it that much easier,” he ended the post.
Of course, he didn’t pass up the chance to get Ryan Reynolds to notice his post, so he tagged the actor’s Instagram in his post’s caption. And after a few months, the star finally saw Jadiant’s epic Deadpool cosplay!
Naturally, Jadiant was thrilled over the fact that his hero noticed him.
“‘My idol Ryan Reynolds saw who I am, he knows I exist. He saw how much work I put into that moment. And now? Well, I can die in peace,” he said in an interview with Bored Panda.
Jadiant added that he felt like he was “dreaming” because he never expected that the actor would actually respond to his post. He just shoot his shot, and he made it!
This young man wears many hats. Aside from being an expert cosplayer, Jadiant is a bodybuilder, a model, a motivational speaker, and a medical student hoping to graduate in 2023. He’s also an ambassador for Courageous Faces Foundation, an organization very close to his heart.
“Our mission statement is to help give a better quality of life for people with rare or severe conditions like myself, which is even more important than ever during this pandemic. A lot of them are at higher risk,” he said.
Instead of being bitter about what happened to him, Jadiant used it to motivate others to love themselves. He wants to share this beautiful message to everyone.
“No one deserves to be unhappy in the way they look, because we’re all beautifully unique. Just sometimes other flowers get more colors (like us, people who have gone through tragedy) and we just don’t think we fit in with the rest of the flowers. But the truth is, we are the most beautiful of all the flowers. So embrace your different colors, you’re pretty, there’s no one else like you,” he said.
Jadian’t story proves that having the right perspective matters. Instead of dwelling in his past, Jadiant chose to move forward and provide inspiration to many. Although it’s not easy, I hope we can all learn to be more like him in our own little ways.
Share this inspiring story of courage with your family and friends!