It is writing prompt day with my blogging group and today’s prompt from Lisa at My So Called Glamorous Life is “If you could have any superpower, what would it be and why?”
This one came pretty quick for me. I have never been super strong, super fast, or athletic in any way, so I have pretty much given up on wanting those things. My one freakish quality has been super-flexibility, but more times than not that has led to injury as much as anything good so I don’t desire more of that.
What I have been thinking about a lot recently is time. I know this is mostly because we are coming to the end of another school year and a big one at that (to me). My daughter is graduating from 5th grade and her elementary school tomorrow night. I know this is not as significant as my friends’ kids who are graduating from high school or college, but it has hit me still.
Once my daughter graduates from elementary school I can no longer pretend that she is a little girl anymore. Even though she is still small in stature, her maturity tells me otherwise. She doesn’t need me as much anymore. She has stopped holding my hand and begun putting a healthy buffer zone between herself and me in public. She is practicing her huffs and eyerolls.
I have found myself wishing of late that I could just freeze time and keep my children exactly like they are.
Big enough to sleep through the night but young enough to want to cuddle on the sofa and watch silly movies together. Capable of handling all bathroom tasks by themselves, but still willing to come to us with all their day’s problems and joys.
But even as I want to freeze time, there are moments in the past that I would like to revisit. This has got me longing a big for the ability to time travel. I got the idea while watching the movie About Time recently. Honestly, the movie had me wanting to join in on the jaunts to the past when I witnessed how useful having a Do-Over for some of life’s awkward moments would be. But I was truly sold on time travel when I saw the possibility of going back and re-living some of my favorite moments with my children in their younger years. I would love to experience my son falling asleep in my arms while nursing one more time. To hear his gentle breathing as his eyes flutter soft and tiny hand grasps mine would be heaven on earth. I’d also go back to the first time I pushed my daughter on a swingset. To see her wide smile of surprise, to hear her giggles keeping time with the sway of the swing.
However, if I had the superpower of time-travel I would go ahead and extend it into the future. For I can’t help wondering how these half grown children of mine will turn out. What will they be like when they do get ready to fly the nest? What will they look like on their wedding day? Or when I see them holding my grandchildren for the first time (they are giving me grandchildren, right?)
But unfortunately, I’ve watched enough Into the Universe with Stephen Hawking to know that my wish for time travel will likely never come true. But the mysteries of the cosmos have given me another hope. While exploring our local museum’s exhibit on black holes I was intrigued to learn how relative time really is; for time slows down the closer one gets to any object of great gravity. Theoretically, while entering a black hole, an object of utmost immense gravity, it would almost be as if time stood still. It fascinated me to think about how eternity could be experienced in this moment.
That got me to thinking about how time really is experienced in relative ways in our lives. We’ve all had those moments when time has flown and those when for good or for bad when time has almost stood still. The moments of greatest gravity, when a loved one is born or when they take their last breath, can almost seem eternal.
So maybe if I can’t have the power to time travel, I can at least give a little more gravity to the moments of my life. By being aware of their true weight, maybe I can slow them down a bit. Maybe even some of these moments will begin to take on the quality of the eternal.
For no moment can last forever. But if I am fully invested and engaged in each moment I am given and value its weight to the fullest, in a sense it can become its own eternity.
There is no going back and re-living the past. But I can live my present one eternity at the time. Even when the eternity involves tissues and a big girl dress.
**Thanks to John Greene for his inspiring concept of “little infinities” in his fabulous novel The Fault in Our Stars. If have haven’t read it yet, you are missing a real treat.
For more thoughts on superpowers, click here to read My So Called Glamorous Life and find the links to my fellow bloggers posts.