Posts Tagged ‘superhero’

I’ve been thinking about superheros again. About how they are different from everyone else — how the behaviors they possess are different from normal (Barney Fifeish) people.

One of the qualities I started thinking about was selflessness. I was having this conversation with a friend about being selfless and how sometimes one person can perceive a behavior as selfless but the one perceived as being selfless can really think they’re just over-burdened (ok, so that wasn’t really part of the conversation but it sounded good now).

But, being selfless is tricky. I would think it might be close to impossible. Even for a superhero. I needed to know more about selflessness, here’s what I found out:

Selflessness: Having, exhibiting, or motivated by no concern for oneself;

acting with less concern for yourself than for the success of others.

Just looking at these definitions really scares me for those that have the burden to be selfless — or maybe just the burden of others thinking they’re selfless. When I thought about this more clearly, I realized that being selfless can be hard, it can be draining, it can cause you to lose yourself — no one should lose themself in the act of helping another. And really, why would you want them to?

When I think about the qualities that someone possesses that attracts me to them as a friend, selflessness has never come up. But, sometimes, it may need to be there, or at least some form of it, in order to keep the relationship going — maybe that would be being sometimes available. So, the difference between selflessness and sometimes available may be the key to having a healthy friendship as opposed to losing yourself. Losing yourself, giving so much that it wears you down, giving more than you’re capable — should never be grounds for a relationship.

So, superheros. Looking at them, they aren’t necessarily selfless. Most superheros from fictional accounts were in love or had businesses; they had something that they cared about for themselves more than the “greater good”. Not selfless. But still superheros.

Selfless is tricky. I’m sure we shouldn’t strive for selflessness. Giving of yourself and being available, but with limits — that should be the goal. Because if you lose yourself by giving to others, would they even want to be around you any more? But giving of yourself because it keeps you whole is poetry.

Friendship is a delicate balance and selfless is tricky.

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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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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.


Who can resist a superhero?

Oh, to aspire to be a superhero.

Who’s your superhero?

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