A New Kind of Hero

4 April 2019

I constantly have dreams where I am a superhero. When I’m unconscious, Super Me is wide awake; swiftly diffusing through solid walls, shooting electricity from her hands, and simply tensing her body to become invisible. She can briskly shove off the ground to fly into the air and create a flame with the snap of her fingers. But when daylight breaks, so does the illusion, as I do not exchange my regular civilian pajamas to don knee high boots and a cape. Instead, I wake up, and reach for my laptop.
The tedious task of discovering what to write I usually find an impossible one, filled with un-bloomed characters, tangled plots, and chipped away endings. But when I have these dreams it’s completely different. It’s as if these stories arrive in my head each night already perfectly concocted and taped together, the only thing left to do is write them down. It almost seems as if I’m cheating the game of writing, selfishly using these premade dreams as the mold for stories of my own. I don’t even find myself thinking ahead or trying to plan anything out, because the only thing that matters is getting every super thing I know out of my head and onto the page.
This Super Me I create is an inflated version of myself. If I am a balloon, she is the epitome of my own personal blimp. I write her to have everything I will ever want, and be everything I wish to be. Super Me is independent, yet self conscious, strong willed and yet still relatable. She always has a sarcastic comeback to retort to her enemy, and an inspirational phrase to quote as she comfortingly rubs her friend’s back. She is my own self created role model, helping me see when I have lost my glasses, and giving me a voice when I have a story to tell.
So my real life superpowers are hardly as exciting or infinite as my characters’. No, I can’t exactly stop time or teleport or manipulate luck or hypnotize. I can’t lift buildings or reflexively fade into invisibility. But I do have the power over my words, wielding the ability to phrase them in ways in which no one else can. I have the ability to spark ideas that will be sure to cause a reaction. At first I was embarrassed. I would never share my work, let alone tell people I write for fun in my spare time. But now I love when people hate what I’ve written, or if they think I’m weird. I love when they have such a strong opinion their only drive to continue reading my work is simply to have more to prod at. Whether it’s a negative or positive impact, I’ve discovered that my real life superpower is the ability to provoke thought.
Sometimes heroes can come to you when you least expect it. They have been known to appear when one is distraught or frightened, and told to find you when you’re lost and scared of the dark unknown. Many people idly wait for their hero. I make one for myself. Maybe writing myself as a fictional superhero shows the type of person I am. It shows me that I don’t need my own idol or role model like most people my age constantly feel like they do. Maybe my own real life hero is me. I believe it’s time to show this world how super I really am.

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