What An Opportunity

I’m no superman.

In Life on October 4, 2012 at 8:12 pm

What do you see when you look out there? Those people in their comings and their goings. They have families. They have hopes. They have fears. They have dreams. They have faith. They secretly hate what they do not know. They are capable of great pain and greater compassion. They pursue the desires of their heart. Fleeting wants chased and forgotten as soon as they appear. The many things that push them towards action and calm. There are those that will rise above and those that will succumb. They stumble, fall, and rise again.

They fight over that which can not last. Yet, they refuse to acknowledge just what position they hold in eternity. They overstate the importance of every decision they make when one can safely assume that the world would continue without them. However, in this way, they can count themselves necessary. Maybe, that is how they cope with the shades of arbitrary motion that defines their planet.

They love unconditionally with restrictions. “I’ll do anything, but I won’t do that.” They hold others to standards they cannot keep. They make excuses for the shortcomings in their lives but cannot forgive their neighbor. They fear being honest with themselves. They fear having an honest conversation with one another. They fear accepting that they are lonely and scared. They fear allowing others to help them because then, someone else would know; though I can guarantee that the other person is lonely too.

But, what can I say? Even in that phone booth, I never look at my reflection. I don that cape and I save them. I stop them from hurting each other. I answer their cries for help. I solve the crimes that are beyond inspection. I give them their standard to strive towards. My uniform resembles their flag so they can associate me with all that is good in their world. I leap buildings in a single bound. I am faster than a speeding bullet. I am superman.

But when I am home, and the cape is hanging in the closet, I am alone. No one else can hear their continuous cries for help. I am supposedly above all of their problems. That is why I can be their savior. Their wonder boy. But after a long day, I look in my bathroom mirror and want to be them. With their self-centered issues, arrogance, irrational ideals, and blind hope. I want to be one of them. I am tired of the face that looks back at me. I am no superman.

So answer me this: is Clark Kent, superman? Or is Superman, clark kent?

  1. This post reminded me very much of when I was a little girl growing up with a preacher as a dad. He’d come home with the weight of a hundred families on his shoulders. He’d weep at the dinner table and could never share the burden with us. It made me mad as a little girl…mad at him, mad at the people who unloaded on him and mad at God. I thought it was unfair that everyone laid their cares at his feet, sought wisdom from him, then left just like that. No one ever said, “Hey, preacher, what’s going on with you?” and it broke my heart.

    I realized as I aged that it was his calling, of course, and that he would have had it no other way, difficulties and all. Still, that of counselor (in any form) is a difficult path to walk.

    • Wow, I just reread this comment and felt compelled to respond. What a picture of a man carrying the burden of others’ pain. It is indeed sad how we are inclined to think only of our worries, and never care how our listener is doing. But your father sounds like an exceptional man. I hope to be so unselfishly loving and giving in my life as I move forward. – Andrew

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