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What's Your Mommy Superpower?

iStock_000011678217Large1I was doing some running around a few weeks back and stopped for lunch at a fast food place. I’m not proud, but hey, I was hungry and in a rush. Don’t judge.

Anyway, when I walked up to the counter, there was a mother and her five kids, and all of them had to be under the age of 10. Mom was talking to the girl behind the counter and the kids were looking at the toys on display that came with the kids’ meals.

And they were getting very excited.

“I’m getting the Princess! I’m getting the Minion! Look at that guy’s weapon! Mom! Mom! I want the… ”

And just like that, Mom turned around, looked at the oldest boy and said quietly and assertively, “Justin, please take your brothers and sisters, go find a table, sit down quietly and wait for me to bring your lunch.”

And within three seconds, they were all quietly walking, rank-and-file, to an open table near the back, following their brother like a squad of well-trained marines.

Once I picked my jaw up off the floor, I laughed, excused myself and said, “Sorry, I just have to tell you, that was amazing. You’ve got an incredibly well-behaved family there.”

At first, she didn’t even really seem to know what I was talking about, and then when she looked at them sitting peacefully at their table, she laughed as well, and said, “Well, they’re not always like that at home, but yeah. Whenever we’re in public, they listen really well.”


Just… just wow!

I felt like she should be wearing a lycra onesie and a gold mask.

It got me thinking; we mothers are our own brand of super-heroes, aren’t we?

One day, we’re just ordinary people, and then over the course of nine months, our bodies undergo a radical change, and we’re suddenly endeared with these uncanny abilities!

My mother, for example, could tune out the most deafening noise, I’m talking pots-and-pans-drum kit noise, when it was going on right next to her, and could still detect the slightest hint of mischief in a room at the other end of the house. The skeptics will tell you that there’s no such thing as Mother’s Sensory Perception, but those of us who have seen it in action know it’s for real.

A friend of mine can take the most random, incompatible leftovers out of her fridge and turn them into a sensational meal in under 45 minutes. How she manages it is beyond my comprehension. No recipes, no running to the store. Just poof! Here’s dinner, from nothing, and it’s awesome.

My mother-in-law can diagnose any illness from 100 yards away in ten seconds flat. Granted, she was a pediatric nurse for most of her career, but nevertheless, three questions, a look in the mouth, and shazam! Affliction identified, and she’s never wrong.

As for myself, I’m endowed with a superhuman ability to prevent insensitivity. My kids never say hurtful or malicious things to me, or anyone else in the family, and although I can’t be certain, I believe that behavior extends to their friends as well. (O.K. Maybe it’s partially because they’re just wonderful kids, but for the purposes of this article, it’s all me and my uncanny abilities.)

Granted, none of us have mastered all of these powers, or at least nobody I know of. We’re all strong in some areas and challenged in others. But every mother I know is an absolute showstopper at one aspect of parenting.

Now, for those people out there who don’t have kids, I’m sure these abilities seem pretty mundane to you.

But believe me, to parents, these are skills that put the comic book superheroes to shame. If I saw a muscle-bound man fly in to a burning building and put out the flames with freezing rays from his fingertips, I mean sure, I’d be impressed, I suppose.

But when I see a woman just walk past a Ben and Jerry’s with four kids, and not one of them even so much as tugs at her pant leg, that’s when I know I’m looking at someone truly extraordinary.

So what’s your mommy super power? I know I’ve barely scratched the surface here, and I’d love to hear about the ways you’ve amazed yourself, and others, since you had kids. Feel free to respond as yourself, or by your superhero name is you prefer to keep your identity a secret.

And if you’d like some coaching on developing those amazing super-mom abilities, or maybe gaining some new ones, check out Kids:The Manual. You’ll be amazed at your new-found abilities to eliminate problem behavior in your kids.

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Straight talk about sleep, parenting,
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My blog is a great place to find opinions, advice, the occasional rant, and some great videos about sleep.

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