7 Life Lessons From 'Once Upon A Time's Emma Swan, Because She Is The Savior, After All

From the very beginning, Emma Swan was the hero of Storybrooke. Even when she didn't believe it, her role as the Savior — as the one person who could save the town from the Evil Queen's evil curse — was pretty much set in stone. It's been a great journey for Emma to impart on, to go from denying to embracing her crucial part in the lives of everyone there, and even more amazing for viewers to witness. The growth the character has experienced in the past four seasons has been monumental, and now, with her new role as the Dark One set to test every ounce of light magic she has in her, Emma's journey will become more important than ever, and no doubt we'll learn even more from her than we already have.

One of the best things about a character like Emma is that she is, in many ways, real. No, I'm not crazy — I can indeed separate fantasy from reality. When I say that Emma's real, what I mean is that she's authentic. She's complicated and she contradicts herself. She can be emotionally closed off and get scared; sometimes she runs when things get too hard (though she is getting better at not doing that). She's human, at the end of the day, and that's what makes her so lovable, and makes the lessons she learns applicable to our lives, too. Am I getting too sentimental over a fictional character? Maybe. Do I care? NOPE.

Good CAN Win Over Evil

Regina and Gold have both been formidable forces of darkness in their time, and it was up to Emma to step up to her Savior role and keep things from going terribly awry. Luckily, she had Henry's belief to guide her, and thankfully, she's proved him right time and time again.

Never Make A Promise You Don't Intend To Keep

When you make a promise to someone, you keep your word, no matter the cost. Now, I'm not suggesting that you sacrifice your soul to the ultimate darkness in order to fulfill your promise, but I am saying that Emma's dedication to never letting anyone down — especially someone like Regina, who has basically been let down her entire life — is inspiring.

Everyone Deserves A Second Chance

One of Emma's most endearing qualities is that she truly believes that anyone can change if they really want to. She's not naive in any way, and she will call you out if you take advantage of her goodwill, but in general, Emma is more than willing to give even the Evil Queen another shot at redemption. And as we've seen, sometimes it pays off.

No One Can Work Alone

It's great to be a strong, independent woman, but that doesn't negate the need to sometimes call on those around you to help the cause, whatever it may be. After all, sometimes two heads (or three or four — whatever the situation calls for) are better than one and can lead to much more success than stubbornly going it alone. Emma might be the Savior, but she's more powerful when she's got people not just behind her, but working alongside her.

Love Is The Most Powerful Savior Of All

Emma was not equipped to become a mother when she was 18, and she probably wasn't even ready when Henry showed up at her apartment in New York four years ago. But sometimes the only way to GET ready for something is to do it, and her increasing bond with Henry and her love for her son and from him has basically been the making of her, and it's been amazing to watch.

Forgiveness Is Not Weakness

Emma has had a LOT of anger pent up inside of her for the last 30 years. Being orphaned with no family, being constantly rejected not only by your parents but pretty much everyone in your life — even the guy you thought was supposed to love you — will do that to you. But when Emma was finally reunited with Snow and Charming and let herself understand their reasons for sending her through that tree, she finally let herself be truly loved. And guess what? It didn't make her weak.

You Can't Outrun Your Fate

No matter how much Emma didn't want the responsibility — and let's be real here, she did NOT want it — it was only a matter of time before Emma realized that being the Savior wasn't just a gift, it was her responsibility and her fate. It's what was inside of her, and it was only when she began to accept it that she became stronger than ever before.

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