There is one less often used meaning of the prefix “super” and that is “exceedingly.” Most often we think of this as meaning “above and beyond” or “higher than expected”. But, it can also mean exceedingly. Given this, I stand corrected. Please allow me to explain.
I have been working 12-14 hour days for the last 2-3 weeks solid. And I have been doing this in addition to helping my oldest prepare his financial aid paperwork for college and helping the twins through a very bumpy marking period in middle school. My daughter who had a stroke last year has been exhibiting new symptoms which I have learned not to ignore. I have been weathering a few major life transitions related to relationships, friendships, family and work during this period all with relative grace. And launching this website which is well outside my comfort zone. Oh, and this little thing called Christmas with trees and cookies and shopping and madness as a single mother of four. The proverbial straw, however, was tonight when the twins simply wanted to change their pierced earrings for the first time and I could not help them because my MS is flaring up and I could not feel my left hand. I could not tell if I was hurting them. I could not guide the post as I wanted. It was anatomical mutiny, damn it! And that was it. I lost it.
I proceeded to storm about and raise my voice which, of course, had very little to do with the earrings themselves and much to do with the fact that I am completely past capacity. It did not help the situation with the girls who simply wanted new earrings in their holes. They were already nervous at the prospect of changing their earrings and I was making it worse. My eldest daughter (who is not afraid to tell me the truth) pointed this out however I was too busy tossing about receipts from the piercing place, demanding that we head to the mall for backup and shouting at her “I AM NOT SHOUTING AT ANYBODY!” followed with “I AM NOT SUPERHUMAN!!!!!!!” But, I stand corrected. I was just that. Exceedingly human.
The reality is nobody ~ and I mean NOBODY ~ could handle my usual day to day with as much humor as I do. But, today, I could not. This has happened only a handful of times in as many years. I am sad, tired, frustrated and angry. I didn’t act with discernment and misdirected my anger. And, I said ridiculous things that I didn’t mean. Superhuman.
After a long walk along the Erie Canal on a cold night, more tears than I have spilled over the course of this hellacious year, a hot bath, my new zebra striped footy pajamas, and a super-sized attitude adjustment I decided to face my daughters. I apologized for my reaction, explained that it wasn’t only about the earrings, hugged and kissed them, and promised to try to do better tomorrow. And I will.
I learned about myself tonight. And my daughters learned about humanity, limitations, responsibility and forgiveness. Most of all they learned about imperfection and what to do when it rears its ugly head.
Good things come from bad all the time…you just need to be looking for it and, sometimes, be willing to swallow your pride enough to allow it to come about.