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Archive for the ‘A Moment Changes Everything’ Category

When I was in between my freshman and sophomore years of college, I was home during the summer and needing a job. Of course I was picky and coffee houses didn’t exist back then and the coveted jobs at the local record store were few and far between. A position came open as a “worker” at a day treatment program for adults dual diagnosed with mental illness and cognitive disabilities — seemed like an interesting job for a 19-year-old and luckily my mother was the director of the program… so, I had my job.

The clients there were endearing and mind-blowing and exhilarating — I remember their faces and most of their names. One of the clients, a man we’ll call “Scott”, seemed so interesting to me. He played football in his youth and still had the physique — 6’2″, broad shoulders, and handsome. He never spoke — never. He never smiled, he never frowned, he never changed his facial expression… always a flat affect. He was always by himself. He never joined the group — always alone. I found out that he had almost killed his 11-year-old cousin. His illness took over one night and he choked the boy — he was found to be mentally ill and placed in the day treatment program. To be honest, I was scared of him. I kept a safe distance from him, I always made sure I knew where he was, I never pushed him to participate in any of the groups.

I play the piano — a little anyway. We had a beautiful piano in my house when I was growing up. Our house was always filled with music — my brother is a drummer, my older sisters were in chorus, I played the trumpet and the guitar and we all played the piano. My mother was a musician — a vocalist. She had aspirations of being an opera singer. There was never a day that went by in my house that my mother didn’t sit down and start playing the piano and singing. We weren’t an average family. Our parents raised us to be independent and self-reliant and we weren’t exactly Ozzie and Harriet. But, it was very normal for us all to gather around the piano and start singing along — Billy Joel, Barry Manilow, Bette Midler, The Commodores. We always had plenty of songs to choose from — sheet music was everywhere. The piano was often the center of our universe. When we didn’t have words for each other, we could sit down and play a song and inevitably someone would come in and sing along.

There was a piano at the day treatment facility. It never got used and was desperately out of tune. Still, I couldn’t help but sit down and play a song each day as I passed by. No one ever joined in to sing — I was usually ignored. Until one day, I sat down and started playing “Endless Love”. “Scott” came over and sat down next to me. I started singing in my best Lionel Richie voice and hoped my nerves wouldn’t show through as he gazed at the piano and then at me. When I finished, his expression was still the same, he still didn’t talk, he still didn’t smile. And I left him there at the piano.

My summer came to an end and I headed back to college — always thinking about the people from the program and sharing their stories with my friends (my summer job was much cooler than working at the record store). When the next summer came around, I was very eager to reclaim my job at the program and luckily many of the same clients were still there — including “Scott”. The therapists were anxious for me to see everyone and said I would be surprised at a few of the people and their progress. On the first day, “Scott” was the first to greet me. He walked up to me and smiled and said hi. We had a conversation — a real conversation. He walked away to go help some of the other clients — he had become a group leader and was perfect in that role. He eventually made his way to the piano and started playing a song — apparently he knew how to play but had stopped when his mental illness started to control him. A few clients gathered around him and started to sing along with him… and me, I was there too.

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I’ve written it here many times… I’m a planner. I like to know what to expect. I like to know the outcome. I like to know if the effort I’m expending is going to pay-off in the end — I like to know. I don’t think this necessarily makes me a bad person or makes me difficult to be around or makes me less of a friend, I hope not anyway. I’ve been afraid of uncertainty and been sitting on the bleachers instead of dancing in the moment — all because I want to know what others don’t want to reveal. Then a couple of things happened in a very short time — most of which I won’t tell you about (unless I have your phone number). But I will share this quote that recently crossed my path:

Don’t seek, don’t search, don’t ask, don’t knock, don’t demand — relax. If you relax, it comes. If you relax, it is there. ~~ Osho

My inability to follow this quote has made for some troublesome twists in my journey. But, recently I decided to “set myself on fire” and I think, for me, one of the things that means is letting go of my constant need to know, to demand, to knock impatiently. I’ve learned a moment can change everything — if we allow the moment to unfold — unguided, just as it should.

I was waiting in line to pick my daughter and her friend up from high school recently. This is usually a time of solitude (even if only for a few minutes). I was checking email on my phone and singing along to my favorite songs — not paying any attention to the hordes of kids around me… finding their way to their cars and their rides and loading the buses. I was startled by a rapping on my window. I looked up to see a boy standing there speaking to me. “Can I ask you a question?”, he said. I rolled the window down and was even more surprised when he asked if he could get a ride home — of course I said yes, so in he came. I told him my name and he told me his, “Jonathan” we’ll say. He explained to me where he lived and how appreciative of me he was. Then an awkward silence filled my car and I began formulating his story in my head. How sad, I thought, that this kid had to ask a complete stranger waiting in a line at his school for a ride home. How sad, I thought, that he didn’t have friends he could have bummed a ride with. How sad, I thought… he must be so sad.

As I moved up in line and saw my daughter approach the car, we exchanged nervous glances and I gave her a “please don’t make a big deal about this kid in the car” look as I introduced her to “Jonathan”. She and her friend immediately started talking to him and, in fact, knew who he was (score one for self-confident 14 year-old girls). So, off we went.

We all started our normal conversations… I asked my daughter about her lunch account at school, did she have enough money, did she put the money I gave her on her account or in her pocket? I caught “Jonathan’s” gaze in my rear view mirror. He said he wished his parents would give him lunch money — my heart sank. As we got closer to his home, he became agitated and anxious — breathing hard and fumbling for his books. Again, my heart sank. When he exited my car he stopped and asked me if he needed his parents to sign him up for a bank account or could he do it by himself — he recently got a job and would be getting a paycheck. At 17, I told him, I thought he was old enough. And “Jonathan” was gone. I immediately asked for the whole story from my daughter and her friend. The tale they spun made me angry and sad and it made me hurt for a boy I didn’t know.

My father died on a Saturday. Early that morning I found myself alone in his hospital room — just the two of us. For the last 5 days, he had been in that hospice room — it was small and cramped and there were many of us who wanted to be there. We had been asking to be moved to the coveted “big” room directly across the hall so when a nurse came in and said we could finally have the room, I was elated. Everyone would be so proud of me when they returned to see that I had scored the “big” room. The nurse said she would change my father’s position in his bed first then we could wheel him across the hall. She looked at him and then at me and asked how long he had been in that position. I hadn’t thought about it until then, but it had been more than a day since we had changed his position. She looked at me again and said I should decide what to do about rotating him. I didn’t understand. She explained that, often, when people are near the end of their life as my father was, any movement could trigger his body to finally give up.

I told her he was fine.

I told her not to touch him.

I told her he looked very comfortable.

I would have let him stay in that position for many months and years to come — just to have him a bit longer. He passed away about 8 hours later — 8 more hours I had to hold his hand.

I feel sorry for “Jonathan’s” father. He doesn’t understand that he could be the one to tell the nurse to leave him alone. He doesn’t understand that he could be the one who wants just 8 more hours. He doesn’t understand the joys and responsibilities of being “Jonathan’s” father.

I think “Jonathan” is dancing in the moment and not dwelling. I think he’s not worried about searching and demanding and seeking — I think he’s not asking… he’s just doing. I’ll be looking for “Jonathan” the next time I pick my daughter up — I hope he sneaks up and taps on my window, I’d like to talk with him some more… because a moment can change everything.

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I have a friend (I love saying that even though we’ve never actually met), she’s a writer — a real writer. Like a kick-ass-slap-you-in-the-face-and-make-you-stand-up-straight writer. Her mother died recently, a long drawn out emotionally draining death to that bitch cancer. But here’s my take-away on a piece of this… she’s writing. And it’s amazing. And she’s touching my soul and making me think about things I thought I was quite comfortably past.

My father died in November a couple of years ago. He had been in the hospital for over 30 days, a week of which was in the hospice unit. During those 30 days, I visited everyday — everyday. I spent many nights in that horrific chair that folds almost flat. If my day at work brought me close to the hospital, I would stop in there for lunch in the cafeteria with my mom — usually 2 or 3 times a week and every weekend.

My routine was simple, I went to my dad’s room. He would immediately say, “Hi sweetheart” or “Hi bulldog” (he took to calling me bulldog during that last month for some reasons I might talk about on another day), then he would say, “take your mother out of here”. My mom would already be getting up to come with me to the cafeteria. It wasn’t an enormous amount of time we would spend in there together — maybe 30 or 40 minutes. But it was our time — time to not worry about the cancer that was taking over my father’s body, time to not worry about the next test or medicine or oxygen levels. We would peruse all the various staples the cafe had to offer then we would sit off to the side and people watch — the greatest pastime of all. We would eavesdrop on conversations and smile at the familiar nurses as they walked by. We would make plans on what do to when they finally let Dad go home — a hospital bed and nursing care and a wheelchair… we had it all worked out. When we were done, we would head back up to Dad’s room (I always stopped at the coffee kiosk to get him a cup of coffee and mom one too), I would kiss him goodbye and let him know which night I would be staying with him and which day I would bring the kids by — and I would leave and carry on with my day. This was my routine… for a month, this was my routine.

After my mom died, I felt I was mourning both their deaths because it all happened so quick. I was numb for a while — in the beginning. One day, I found myself driving in a familiar area at lunch time — my car guided itself into the hospital parking garage. I walked to the cafeteria and perused the various offerings. I sat off to the side and I eavesdropped on a few conversations. I smiled at a few familiar faces. I stopped at the coffee kiosk on my way to the waiting area on the hospice floor. I sat down and drank my coffee… and I left and carried on with my day. There were no thoughts, no cognitive processing — just physical actions. I did this about 3 or 4 times over the next month or two — I don’t know why… but it felt good, the routine, the familiarity of it.

So, my friend, the kick-ass writer — brought that deeply buried memory of that routine to the forefront of my thoughts. Words do that for us sometimes. Words matter. They help us, they heal us, they break us, they anger us, they sadden us, they make us shake in fits of laughter. That’s my take-away from this — I don’t know why… but it feels good to experience all those things.

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I’ve been in between pay checks since May. That’s a long time to be in between paychecks. This seems to be one of the other things that isn’t really clear about divorce — you have to learn to live on your own… financially. Everything was working out well until the last week (that’s usually the case, right?). I found myself down to the bare essentials. Making sure I had pancakes for breakfast and chips for the lunch boxes, oh… and of course chocolate milk. I remembered a money jar I had in my closet and decided I would cash it in — this would be the financial bridge I needed for the last remaining days of my own personal economic crunch.

I cashed in the jar and was amazed that it held $79.98 — amazed! My semi-stressed mood soared like I had just opened the door to the “Prize Patrol”. I clutched my winnings tight to my chest and headed straight for the gas station. My oversized-4-wheel-drive-gas-guzzling car had been screaming for a small drink of petrol all morning. I proudly walked inside and handed a crisp $20 bill to the attendant. Then proceeded to head back out to pump my gas (all the while thinking about how I would splurge at Starbucks after work on a venti sugar-free soy mocha hazelnut — nectar of the gods). On my walk back to my car, I also started thinking about buying something special for dinner that night — maybe I would splurge on shrimp and salmon at the store after work (the kids love shrimp and salmon night). There was a definite spring in my step at this point and I even took the time to smile coyly at a couple of customers as I approached my car. My phone rang and I couldn’t wait to answer it and tell whoever happened to be on the other end about that money jar and the $79.98. I listened intently as my friend told me about her morning and what was happening with work and where we were going to meet later on, then I mentioned that money jar and how bleak I was feeling before but now was walking on the sun with my winnings. I drove away and finished my conversation then cranked up the tunes as my new favorite song was playing — perfect timing. I was living in the zenest of moments. Then it dawned on me… I forgot to pump my gas.

I got so caught up in the feeling that I drove away without my $20 of gas… and for a brief second, my world stopped spinning. I turned the radio off, I screamed obscenities at the top of my lungs, I berated my careless behavior in such a financially poor time, and I thought about going back. I had just wasted $20 at a time when I couldn’t afford to be so careless.

But then, I let my imagination have its way with me — I imagined that another single mother of three in more dire need than me was steeling herself to pump her car full of gas and then speed away without paying. I imagined she had no other choice, I imagined she had no food at her house, I imagined her electricity was about to be cut off, I imagined her cell phone had long been disconnected. I imagined her kids needed shoes and clothes and food — I imagined they needed food. I imagined she cried herself to sleep trying to come up with a solution. I imagined she was out of solutions. I imagined she was young and scared and alone. I imagined she got caught, I imagined her children lonely and scared and crying for their mom. Then I imagined that she drove up to my pump to do her deed, and there… waiting for her, was $20 in gas. Just enough, I imagined, to get her to that job interview and secure her financial future for her and her kids. Just enough, I imagined, to give her hope for her future. Just enough, I imagined, to let her wake up to a new day. All because of my $20 that I forgot to pump.

So, I turned the radio back up and another amazing song was on — and I sang along at the top of my lungs and a tear fell down my face — a new day. I stopped at the next gas station and gave the attendant another crisp $20 bill from my money jar winnings. I laughed. I smiled at my forgetfulness. I decided I might do this again… on purpose this time. Leave $20 of gas for an unsuspecting single mother of three to find just in the nick of time to save her from herself.

I still had enough for my splurge at Starbucks and for the shrimp and salmon. All in all, a pretty good day. I’m filling my money jar back up… I wonder what stories it will have next month.

I developed a severe crush on this video and this project — I think you will too.

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My father was the oldest of six children. When he was eight years old, his father, an abusive alcoholic, had left the family. Not all together a bad thing. Except it left my grandmother without the financial means to care for her six children. So, around 1942, my grandmother made a decision that would greatly affect the life paths for those six children — she placed the five oldest in an orphanage in their town. In 1942, the only prerequisite for placing children in an orphanage was whether or not space was available — space was available.

My father kept the stories of the abuse he suffered there hidden from us, from everyone — only in the last year of his life did he begin to reveal some of the secrets he hid away so carefully. I spent a day recently with my uncle. He was a much more willing participant to tell some of the stories from the orphanage, as he occasionally held his wife’s hand for a memory jolt and a secure grasp. The boys were beaten, very often. My father bore the scars of those beatings on his back from the time he was 8, until he passed away at 72 — a reminder that time doesn’t heal everything.

My uncle told us of when they first went to the orphanage, he was 5 and my father 8. He said the boys were separated by age which meant my father was separated from the rest of his siblings. But at night, after the lights were out, my uncle would see my father make his way to the bathroom to relieve himself. My uncle would use that opportunity to go to the bathroom as well — with his big brother. They got caught one night on their way to the restroom. My uncle said that once the lights were out, you were not to get out of your bed — for anything. The rules of the orphanage were not to be broken. Young boys have a difficult time making it through the night without a trip to the bathroom. They paid the price. Their shirts were removed and they were beaten with a leather strap from their shoulder blades to the backs of their knees — blood, flesh, tears. Boys, 8 and 5, who learned that wetting the bed was a better alternative. Then, in an attempt to keep the boys from wetting the bed at night, the head of the orphanage would make them all swallow a spoonful of salt before bed — no water. Time does not heal all wounds and some memories remain close to the surface. But, I promised a story of baseball… so, let’s continue.

Kids have a way of surviving… of coping — a resiliency that adults sometimes forget they ever had. The boys from the orphanage had baseball. They were allowed to work on a farm — that was their sanctuary. The farm was run by an angelic couple who brought what peace they could into the lives of the boys for the few hours each day that they were together. My father loved baseball. Lived baseball. My uncle is the same way. But not just any baseball team, the St Louis Cardinals. But neither my father nor my uncle ever played on a team… ever. There was no baseball team at the high school, no little league — but, they played every chance they got. They would prepare a spot in a field at the farm for a baseball diamond. And there, all their nightly beatings, all their scared feelings, all their lonesome hostilities would dissipate — if only momentarily.

The church’s in the area would all form baseball teams — a semi league. The church teams would take turns coming to the farm and challenging the boys. There were probably 30 boys who had, for a variety of reasons, ended up at the orphanage — they were tough and worn and they were, by all accounts… brothers. And during the day they were boys, they played and they fought. They bonded on the baseball field each day. A break from the hard work on the farm, a break from the memories of a house that used to be theirs, a break from their reality. At night, when they returned to the orphanage… they became battle-scarred soldiers. But at night, when everything was quiet, they could seek solace in the promise that the next day a new team would come to challenge them. Baseball was their refuge. Baseball gave them a reason to not succumb to the beatings of the night — because their field would be there, the next day, at the farm… waiting for them.

My uncle finished his stories with a distant look in his eyes… a memory perhaps, of an orphanage that he wanted to forget or of how baseball helped him to remember. The bonds of childhood and the game of baseball are still fresh in his memory — as they should be.

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We grew up in a small town, a very small town. No one knew the population for sure but 15,ooo seemed to be the number we would all finally agree on — it was the largest town in a circle of other smaller communities. Like most kids growing up in a small town — we were always looking for something else… something we thought only existed in any place other than where we lived. We gathered at the lake and spent hours swinging out over the water, jumping from the water falls, leaping from bridges — laughing, swimming, talking. This was our town. The lake was the center of our universe. We would ride our bikes or have someone drop us off — somehow we got there. The majority of our conversations revolved around how we were going to escape our town — when we got older, we could get away.

At night, when it became too dark to enjoy the lake, we would change our location and head to the drive-in or a field somewhere. Fields are very popular locations for hanging out in small towns. We would sit on blankets and cook-out hotdogs and hamburgers, we would feel like adults as we drank the beer we somehow acquired at the local market. We watched the stars and talked about the constellations and saw more than one amazing meteor shower. We would laugh and talk and dream of a time when we would be old enough to leave this town behind.

Sometimes at night, we would gather at the drive-in on the outskirts of town for a double feature. Car hatches popped open, lawn chairs, coolers, friends. The movie never mattered — no one really went for the movie. We went to talk and laugh and be with one another. We went to share stories of the day at the lake — who made the biggest splash off the bridge, who got hurt on the rope swing, who had broken up and who had kissed. We talked about what we were going to do the next day and we would always laugh because we knew the routine so well. We dreamed of the day when we would be old enough to drive away and never look back.

When we were old enough for college, we moved away. We settled on out-of-state schools and schools in the biggest cities and schools that were the farthest away. We grew apart when we left our town behind. We talked to our new friends about all those days we would spend jumping off bridges and cooking out under the stars. We began to count down the days until Thanksgiving break when we knew we would all gather in the alley behind Daddy Billy’s and talk about how we loved our new life and how we loved having things to do and how it was so much more than just a lake and a field and a drive-in. We cried when it was time to return to our new life. We longed for a day at the lake.

When we finished college we settled in new towns and started families and became adults — just like we always dreamed. When our children became old enough, we started to hear the words leaving their lips that always came out of our own mouths — they long to be old enough to escape the small towns we decided to settle in. They long for something to do besides hang-out at the lake, go to the movies, and cheer on the football team. They talk about what they’ll do when they grow up.

We know what they’ll do. They’ll look at the calendar and count down the days until their first Thanksgiving break from college. They’ll watch the miles tick on the car as they get closer to that small town. They’ll see the lake as they cross over the bridge — and they’ll know…they’re almost home.

Rutledge Falls — many sprained ankles and scratched backs acquired here.

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There’s something to be said about talking. Using words to express our thoughts, our feelings, our troubles — typed words, vocal words. Talking can prevent wars and fights and jokes gone wrong or they can express caring and hope and the will to hang on.

My mother was a mental health therapist, a very good one. We talked in my house. We fought diligently. We repaired damage with fervor. We laughed, and joked, and cried using our words. If something went askew we often stewed like others — but, eventually we came together to set things straight, using our words.

It’s easy, I think, when you talk to someone they can hear your sincerity or your sarcasm or your fears. Talking gives us something that others in the animal kingdom don’t have — words to express our thoughts, sound to accompany the words… expression and tone and cadence.

I rely on words to help pull me up. They help me get a laugh. They help me explain a poor decision. Words give me comfort and being able to express them gives me credence.

Your words tell others you heard and you listened. Words give others value — people need value. Talking can be hurried or last an afternoon away — the words you chose matter. The way they are lifted from your heart and mouth matter.

Some are better at talking than others — better at expressing their feelings, their concerns, their dreams. Better.

There is an art to talking.

A word, find the word.

Use it well,

Make sure you get heard.

Think it all out or spew forth with nonsense,

Your words are what matters,

Your words are what’s heard.

Say them loud or whisper with ease,

Someone will hear them.

Someone will listen.

Whisper so you can still be heard.

Yell when the crowd seems deafening.

Stutter when your nerves creep up.

Be firm when your righteous indignation wants out.

There is an art to talking.

Image from visitsteve.com

And trust me, you should visit that site.

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This seems like as good a time as any to look a little farther into this superhero thing. There seems to be a great deal of controversy as to whether superheros are born superheros or are they made in to superheros. (Ok, so maybe there’s really not a controversy but it makes for some excitement.) Superman — born. Spiderman — made. Batman — umm, actually I’m not sure (those crazy pointed ears!).

I hear stories very often about people who perform some great acts of heroism. Were they destined to be there, at that spot, at that given time, to perform whatever feat they performed? Was it a fluke? Did it all just happen?

I guess maybe the question is about destiny. Is it all pre-determined or do we get to have a say in it? I would think that even Christians would have to believe that possibly we have a say in it. Otherwise, why would we have been given the gift of “free will”?

I think it’s interesting to hear stories from people about times in their life when they felt broken or beat down or stuck. Hearing how people got up, how they walked away from the broken — makes for a good story. We all stumble and sometimes we even fall. But, it’s those of us that get up — you know, scrapped knees only hurt for a short time and bruises usually fade with time. Do superheros stumble?

There is an owl that lives in the woods across the street from my house. I’ve heard it hoot around 5:16 every morning for at least 10 months. I don’t know anything about owls — how long they live, how long do they nest in one place, why do they only hoot at 5:16am. I’m not sure if it’s the same owl — but I pretend it is. I have formed quite a relationship with this owl — although I’ve never seen her (I think she is a she). She wakes me up every morning. She talks to me in a calm demeanor. She is always there.

I’m not sure who else has heard my owl. My house is positioned so that I possibly could be her only friend. My kids have never heard my owl, their rooms are far away from mine. I have peered out my window on many mornings hoping to catch a glimpse of her. I try to follow her hoot so that I can pinpoint her location — I want to know what tree she is actually in. But, it’s been impossible so far. I’ve thought about going outside and following her hoot — but at 5:16 it’s sometimes dark, and sometimes cold, and sometimes lonely. I’m not sure she would be open to having a visitor to her woods.

Maybe if I had superpowers I could see her in the dark. Maybe if I had superpowers I wouldn’t be afraid to walk across the street to the darkened woods. Maybe…

So, are superheros made or are they born? Can you overcome your fears to find the powers that perhaps have been in you all along? Can you walk across the street to greet a friend that beckons you every morning? Maybe…

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So, I was thinking about this superhero thing and how superhero’s are completely evolved into these…well, superheros. Superheros have this way of walking into your life and making it seem a little more bearable. And hopefully, they stay. Hopefully they don’t fly away to answer the next cry for help.

I recently read a post by my good friend, the brilliant Judy Clement Wall, about how sometimes we have to step into reality and focus on the things that physically bind us together (ok, so that may be my interpretation — not hers!). But, as usual with her writing, it made me think.

I thought about how much I love to spend time with my kids. We often do fun things together — like go to the lake, take trips to Disney, hold each other, hug, talk, laugh. I love for my kids to smile and be happy. Sometimes they’re not though — that’s just the way it goes in human nature. And when they’re not happy, I reach for that borrowed superhero cape and pretend for a moment that I can save the day, that I can rescue them, that I am their superhero.

By nature, kids want to be happy — it borders on selfish I would say. Not in a bad way, don’t get me wrong. But, they need to be happy because that’s what feels the best. It’s primal. It’s instinctive. So, as a mother who aspires to be a superhero, I try to shield them from anything other than the “happy”. But, sometimes, it’s unavoidable. Sometimes the “happy” seems so far away that attaining it is, quite simply, impossible to fathom — especially in the mind of a child. As a mother who aspires to be a superhero, that is the hardest part. To stay focused on an end result that you know will bring the “happy” to everyone — just maybe not soon enough for the child’s need for immediate gratification.

So, the quest continues. The quest to be a superhero is long and tedious. It changes everyday with each new cry for help, with each new need to make the “happy” stay as long as possible.

Superheros seem happy don’t they? At least the make-believe one’s always solve the crisis with a smile, a kind word — and then they leave. But, the real superheros — I think — stick around. They don’t need to fly off. Maybe they need someone to help them find the “happy” too. Maybe the real superheros, with a little help from their friends, can get past all the masked bad guys and find the “happy” — and then share it, especially with the kids.

Oh, to be a superhero.

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Superheros.

Who can resist a superhero?

Oh, to aspire to be a superhero.

They have special powers, they have special weapons, they have sidekicks. There’s much controversy surrounding the ultimate superhero — Batman, Superman, Spiderman. I have this friend who thinks that Batman is the ultimate superhero. I’m not going to mention any names, mainly because she is so wrong on this one. Seriously, Batman’s costume has pointy ears on it. Who can take him seriously with pointy ears? The real ultimate superhero is Aquaman (hey, it’s my blog, my superhero).

Bear with me for a moment while I give you the run-down of his abilities:

  1. He can hold his breath for a really long time.
  2. He has telepathic ability to communicate with underwater creatures — (and from a really long ways away too.)
  3. He can swim up to 10,000 feet per second. (Don’t believe me? You know I googled.)
  4. He can see in near total darkness. (As someone who doesn’t really care for the dark, this is very beneficial.)
  5. Here’s a good one — he has the ability to create portals into mystic dimensions. (Tell me that’s not cool.)
  6. Did I mention Batman has pointy ears?

There are superheros in our lives everyday, actually. They have special powers of their own — power to heal, power to laugh, power to listen, power to care. But, wouldn’t it be great to take these special powers and add a little something extra to them?

Here are some of the superpowers I think I might like to have:

  1. The power to slow down time. Don’t get this confused with stopping time. I’ve never thought stopping time was a good option — we should always be moving forward, even if just a little. But to slow down time would be great. Like when you’re talking on the phone to someone and you just don’t want to hang up — you want to linger a little longer. Or when you find yourself in a quiet, peaceful place — just to be able to stay there for a few minutes more.
  2. The power to jump forward in time. Now this one can be tricky, you have to use it just right so that not too much is revealed. But wouldn’t it be nice to fast forward a little so that you can enjoy the outcome.
  3. The ability to shine. Some people actually have this superpower — it’s rare to be sure. But, the ability to give off a light that other people long to be in the shadow of… must be a wonderful superpower.
  4. The ability to hold your breath for a really long time. Ok, so I stole this one from Aquaman. But, I think mine might be a little different. Maybe instead of holding your breath, it would be good to just take a breath — to breathe, to relax, to enjoy.

Superheros don’t always wear costumes or satiny capes. They don’t always try to conceal their real identities. They don’t always get there just in the nick of time. But when they do show up, their superpowers are unmistakable.

Superheros.

Who can resist a superhero?

Oh, to aspire to be a superhero.

Who’s your superhero?

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