I remember being a little girl and just looking at my father like he was the one with all the answers and strength and wisdom in the world. Now, that I have kids, I’m seeing it all over again in the perceptions my children have of my husband.
My husband is pretty great.
This is a factual statement.
But, if you ask my children, it is very short of the truth.
In my childrens’ eyes, he is not just Super Dad, he is Super Human.
When watching Adam West in the 1960′s Batman episodes, one of the first observations our three-year old son made was that ”Batman doesn’t hab any muscles. Dada has muscles.”
Admittedly, by modern Super Hero standards, Adam West could have used a little more Creatine in his diet.
But, to entertain the conversation, I asked, “Well, who is stronger? Kilowog, The Incredible Hulk or your Dad?” The very quick answer was that Dad was, of course, stronger.
In my mind, I had another conversation with my son. And, in my mind, I said things like- ”Yes, but can your dad, or The Incredible Hulk, or Kilowog, or Batman make milk with their boobies? Nope. Didn’t think so. Score for the mom team.”
But there have been other times where my husband’s otherworldly powers have been summoned by our kids.
For instance, when we were driving down the road in the direction of blinding sun, our son cried out that sun was in his eyes and to move it!!! When I expressed that I can do many things, but moving the sun is not one of them, he demanded that his father do it. And when I informed him that even Super Dad could not do that, he asked, “Well, can Dada’s truck move the sun?”
It makes sense.
Dad’s truck can pull an RV. Why not the sun?
And it is during moments like this that my mind entertains hypothetical conversations with my son about how cool his mom really is. ”Sure, your dad’s truck might be able to move the sun, son. But, can Dad grow an entire organ? I don’t think so. I can. It’s called a placenta. And, it’s so cool that people actually make shampoo with it.”
I recall another day, our family watched the movie Superman Returns.
There was a scene where Lex Luther had purposefully cut the brakes of his vapid girlfriend to draw Superman into a rescue. Surprised by the authenticity of her mortal danger, the dingy girl pretty much hugged all over Superman and our daughter asked, “Why is she loving on Superman?”
In my mind, I thought, “Well. Who wouldn’t?” I mean, look at the guy. But, I didn’t say that.
But, I answered, “Well, she was scared and Superman helped her. She’s very happy.” I might have also thrown in (under my breath), ” And, he’s also very handsome and strong.”
Our daughter responded, “Yeah. Just like Daddy!”
And our son said, “Maybe Daddy will be Superman, too!”
And back into my mind I retreated and thought unspoken thoughts. “Yes. Daddy could be Superman. He is just as handsome and strong and helpful, but can Daddy OR Superman EVER grow a human being in their bellies? Nope. That’s only something Super MOMS can do. The closest thing to childbirth for a dad might be the highly unfortunate incident of having to pass kidney stones. But, at the end of even that painful ordeal, men are left with a tube of asymmetrical crystals their bodies grew. But we women? We grew YOU…..”
So, one day, after hearing about how dad was the coolest guy ever and (honestly agreeing wholeheartedly with the kids on that fact, by the way), I asked my daughter for the first time, “So? Daddy does some cool stuff. What does Mama do?”
In my mind, again, I figured this would be a great confidence booster. I mean, moms do a lot of stuff every day- Wage-earning moms and Stay-At-Home-Moms alike. This mom-gig is a tough business. I couldn’t wait to hear the answer.
And our daughter didn’t think for long before answering.
“Uh? You are cranky and you drop things.”
Well, that’s just awesome.
It appears my double-X applies to more than my homogametic chromosome structure.
My hubby is definitely an X-WHY.
As in WHY is daddy Super Man and Mom is, well, Mom?
It could be the familiarity of being around Mom all the time. It could be that Dad really is physically bigger and broader…(well, at least now that I’m not in my third trimester anymore.) It could be that kids go through phases of idolization of strong male figures. It could be a lot of things. And, I’m not really concerned about any of them.
I write this only because all of these things come together in a very funny way to me.
I joke about it here and that shouldn’t be confused with any real envy of my husband’s Super Human-ness in the eyes of my kids.
I think it’s wonderful that he is so idolized. It is a lot better than the alternative.
Plus, on many levels, their dad is a pretty Super Guy.
But, one day, I’m hoping our kids will have kids.
And if or when those days come, I know they’ll look at their imperfect mom in a whole new way.
They are going to look at mom like she could have moved the Sun.
I know they will.
Because that’s exactly what I did when I looked at my mom through new mom-eyes.