The moment a baby is conceived, a woman becomes a mother. And with that title, she acquires a wealth of superpowers. Some are common to all mothers and some are unique to each individual. Growing a human being is by far, the most powerful superpower a mother has; for nurturing life itself is nothing short of a miracle.
As her belly grows and she feels her baby inside, she grows more powerful with each passing day. At night, she has the ability to shift positions while doing yoga-like poses to reach a comfortable spot despite the fact that she is practically immobile due to her large mid-line protrusion. While pregnant, she can also simultaneously sneeze and pee herself at the same time, not a valuable power, but a funny one to say the least. She maneuvers her body into strange contortions to tie her shoes. She can all at once feel sad, happy, mad and elated and can express those emotions all in one sentence.
When the baby arrives, her superpowers grow exponentially alongside her thriving baby. Functioning on such little amounts of sleep that would lead the most top-secret agent to confession, she wearily feeds, bathes and cares for her child all the while remembering the words to “Somewhere over the rainbow,” the mere sound of her tired voice calming her wakeful child. She can carry her child on her hip with a packed diaper bag on one arm, a purse on the other arm and a load of groceries in her hand and yet, she can still tickle her baby and do “The Itsy Bitsy Spider” with her free hand. A mother has superhuman strength.
As baby turns to toddler, a mother’s powers learn to walk alongside her child and her powers really begin to take off. She breathes through tantrums swallowing her frustration. She teaches her child colors, animals, sounds, numbers and the small wonders in everyday life. She magically kisses away boo boos and keeps monsters away at night.
Her child grows and life becomes easier in ways it was once so challenging. Sleep is not a foreign concept anymore and she no longer feels like a donkey because the diaper bag is packed away and her child can walk. New super powers begin to emerge. As the preschooler enters school, the novelty of this new world is exciting for both mother and child. She may go back to work, she may become room mom to a classroom, or she may volunteer. She can take care of her child, herself, and her home while accomplishing more than the average person in one day.
Eventually, another child comes along and she not only has all of her earlier supermom powers but she develops new ones. She manages to nurse a baby while cooking and helping the older child tie shoes. She powers through loss of sleep because she can no longer sleep when baby sleeps. She grows invisible eyes in the back of her head and though she seems distracted with the second child, she knows everything that is going on. A mother has the power to know what her child is thinking before they think it.
And when one or both children are sick, she knows exactly the moment to call the doctor and she intuitively knows what her children need. She listens to herself rather than advice of friends or family quite often because a mother’s gut instinct is powerfully accurate. When her children’s sense of well-being is threatened by another person, a mother has invisible claws that come out to defend her brood and will go to great lengths for their health, safety and happiness.
Second baby grows and older child goes to elementary school where volunteering opportunities, fundraisers and extracurricular activities abound. The younger child starts taking “mommy and me” classes and the day fills up with classes, errands, cleaning, naps, homework, and after school activities. Time for herself chips away and she becomes spread too thin. This is when her most powerful supermom ability comes out. She does not realize it yet but as soon as she is asked to do something that she feels she should but truly does not want to, she takes a deep breath and hesitantly says, “No.” It comes out as a whisper because she does not want to disappoint; mothers love to please. But the moment the sound leaves her lips, she feels liberated. Choosing happiness for herself and her children brings her freedom; freedom from the pressures of motherhood and the expectation that they should do all that is asked of them. A mother can do everything, but the moment she chooses to focus on her well-being in addition to that of her children, she becomes whole.
All mothers have the power to hold themselves in the same high regard they hold their children, but they rarely use it. In the early days, mothers often forget themselves. They get lost in all that is expected of them, by the world and by the cruel critics in their mind. True power comes from letting those expectations go. A mother can be her best for her child expressing her supermom powers while also doing the best for herself. She can reveal to the world that she is strong, formidable, and powerful; that her children mean the most to her, but that she is important too. And in this knowledge, her powers strengthen.