Sam and I were driving in the car today when I asked him what kind of superhero power he would love the most.
“I think I’d want to fly,” he said. He then asked what mine would be.
Without hesitation, I said:
“I want to simply think of the food items we need and have them magically appear so I no longer have to to go the grocery store. I’d also like our fridge to magically purge itself of old food we’re not going to eat so I don’t have to feel shame for wasting food.”
Sam: “Hmmm. That’s boring.”
Me, shrugging: “I know. But it’s what I want the most.”
I then thought of more Super Powers I would like to possess, which I will now share with you.
- I would like for all of the library books to gather themselves into a bag (ALL OF THEM. WITH NONE OF THEM MISSING) by the front door in a handy canvas bag when it’s time to drop them off at the library.
- The ability to talk to two children talking to me at once without wanting to take a Xanax.
- To automatically know practical Mom things other moms seem to know, like knowing kids give gift bags to each other at the end of the school year.
- Knowing other mom things automatically, but then possessing the ability to NOT CARE / feel the slightest bit of guilt when you know others are giving gift bags but you don’t.
- Children’s shoes appear magically on said children’s feet when you first scream about it.
- Blink and your filthy car will be clean.
- Super human strength to put down my phone and clean my house.
I could go on and on. And I’ve given it some thought and I would like ALL of these things more than the power to be invisible or shape-shifting or anything equally fantastical in the Marvel / DC cannon.
This is why women artists get nervous about having children. Because your brain stops being creative or ambitious or thinking about anything beyond the immediate needs of your children. I used to have a pretty fertile mind and now, when asked what my superhero power would be, I think: “Snapping and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches would be made.”
I mean, I don’t really need to fly. But I do want someone to unload the dishwasher, you know?
It’s so boring and stereotypical but yet, it’s real.
Although I would like to neatly wrap this up by ending it with something cute like: SEE? MOMS ARE SUPERHEROES. BE PROUD MAMAS. HERE’S A MUG THAT SAYS ‘MOMS ARE SUPERHEROES’ YOU CAN BUY FROM MY ETSY SHOP! I cannot.
Because that’s not true. It’s the kids that are the superhero in this metaphor.
Think about it: When you are a child, you open a drawer and there are clean clothes in it. When you are hungry, food appears. You flip on a light, and light comes. You want to go somewhere and, magically, you are shuttled to that place. Shoes are placed on your feet, clean underwear placed on your bum. You say you want to go to Soccer Camp and BOOM! You go to Soccer Camp. You think it, you say it: It (usually) happens.
And we parents are their strange magic. And that’s okay. Tiring, but okay. They have the rest of their lives to figure out they are just mere mortals. Until then, let’s help them feel as though life is indeed enchanted for as long as we can.
Their imagination needs it.