The Superhero in You


by Suzanne Reisler Litwin

So… here I am sitting on a plane.  I’m going to be here for quite a while.  I brought plenty of things to keep me busy.  Actually, it’s a great time to get work done as there are very few distractions.  I pull out my homework folder which contains my students’ assignments.  These need to be corrected.  I stare at them.  I’m just not in the mood to read and correct right now.

Luckily, the airline I’m travelling on has many in-flight movies to choose from.  Geez, I haven’t seen a movie in a long, long time.  My son told me to watch the movie, “Wonder Woman”.  He said the special effects were amazing and the lead was perfect.

There’s nothing like watching a good 2-hour movie to make a plane ride go faster.  I watched and loved the movie.  More so than the storyline and the beautiful acting, I particularly enjoyed the superhero powers and special effects.  This got me thinking… Super Hero Powers!

I would like to have a few superhero powers!  Being invisible sounds like a lot of fun!

I recently asked my students if they have, within themselves, a superhero power.   Together we listed on the blackboard many superhero powers.  Here are some from our list: superhuman strength, healing factor, water breathing, flight, time travel, invulnerability, x-ray vision, invisibility, telepathy, disguise, and superhuman speed.

Then I asked the question again.  Do any of you have a superhero power?  Perhaps it’s not on the surface.  Perhaps it’s within your person, your strength, your being.  I suggested they internalize their thoughts and answer the question within a personal narrative.  The students will be presenting their information as part of a creative writing activity.  I look forward to their responses next week.

I thought about the question I posed to them.  Do I have any superhero powers?  I came to the conclusion that, I do!

Just as Wonder Woman held up her shield and protected herself from the pounding forces of evil, I do the same.  Perhaps it’s not with an actual physical shield, but it’s a barrier which I use.  My superpower is the ability to protect myself from evil and negativity.  There are many ways in which I do this.  Primarily, I position myself in environments which are positive, loving and encourage happiness.  I surround myself with wonderful and beautiful people.  I repel the evil-minded and block the negativity.  I control this and this is my superhero power.  It’s not perfect as it doesn’t always work, but it does work well enough for me.

Here’s another thought…

When presented with a glass which is half filled with water, I’m asked, “Is this glass half full or half empty?”  For me, it’s neither.  I see the glass entirely full to the top!  The glass is filled with water and air, both which are required for life.  If the water is clean to drink, and the air is clean to breathe, and the glass is clean to drink from, the glass is wonderfully full of hope!

I repel the negativity of the glass being half empty!  My shield comes into effect here.

As Wonder Woman was being pounded by different evil forces, she used her shield to protect herself and move her body forward towards defeating the force.  I feel the same way in my life.  Although I am not personally met with evil forces on a daily basis, there is evil all around us.  Horrific situations happen in the world every day.  Simply reading the morning newspaper can spiral you into the depths of despair.  That’s when I put on my superhero big boots and say to myself, “The world needs me to make things better!” and off I go on my path of positivity!  Super-Sue to the Rescue!

And… back to reality… I’m on a plane for quite a bit longer.

There are some other superpowers I would love to have at this time. How’s about the ability to fly? Imagine a world with no traffic jams, where you can travel anywhere on a whim and see the world from a bird’s eye view. Personal flight would come in very handy right now!

How’s about Omni-linguism?  The ability to understand any form of language. You could travel around the world and never have to worry about a language barrier.  I would LOVE that one!

If you had the power of Atmokinesis, you’d be able to control the weather.  Imagine being able to summon a snow day and get a day off or having rain occur only during the evening.  You might never have to water your lawn again!  Every day could be the perfect day.

I’m sure you know someone who has superhuman strength.  Someone who has fought hard against something horrible or evil and has won the battle. Perhaps our superhero powers are all within us and we don’t know it?  Sometimes our inner strength is much stronger than we realize.  It might even come as a surprise.  You might say to yourself, “I didn’t know I had this in me? I’m a lot stronger than I ever thought!”

I wish I had precognition, the ability to predict the future. I would save so many lives.  I wish I had the power to heal.  I would put an end to so much suffering. I wish I had the power of time manipulation as I would turn back the time to correct worldly mistakes. Maybe even visit my beloved – Elvis!

If I possessed the power of intangibility, I would be able to phase through solid matter without harm. It’s the same as being able to walk through walls! You could never be locked out of your house or car because a key wouldn’t be necessary.  Imagine the places you would go?

Some friends can communicate through facial expressions, interpretive dances, or in other non-audible ways. Still, wouldn’t it be easier to develop the power of telepathy and communicate by reading each other’s minds? You could carry on conversations without uttering a word.  Although, really close friends and family can pick up on those cues without actual speech.

Think about your superhero power.  Which one is within you? You might not realize you have one, but you do!

Suzanne Reisler Litwin is an instructor at Concordia University in The Centre for Continuing Education.  She is a writing instructor at The Cummings Centre. She writes a weekly column in The Suburban Newspaper and at the West Island Blog. Suzanne is a freelance contributor to The Suburban Newspaper, West Island Blog, Wise Women Canada, The Metropolitain, and Women on the Fence. She is the author of the children’s book, The Black Velvet Jacket. Visit to read more of her published articles, books, and poetry.


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