Monday, April 15, 2013

The Evolution of a Superhero

Last night we had dinner with friends. Over the course of the evening the story of us, Mr. Awesome and I, came tumbling out. I love sharing our story because its unique and quirky and beautiful. Mr. Awesome feels a little awkward sharing our story because of the weird looks and general confusion that follows our opening line, "We never dated."

Its true. The condensed version of This Random Love Story is that Mr. Awesome and I met, became friends, became best friends then I moved three provinces away for school. When I had been gone for about three weeks he called me and said, "I think you should come home and we should get married."

I hung up the phone.

He called back. A month later I was on a plane heading home, we got engaged at the airport and eight months later we were married. Now, 16 years later we are married with three Wee Wonders. We are truly, madly, deeply in love with each other. We are partners in every sense of the word. He is first and still my best friend.

And he is a superhero.

I started calling him 'Mr. Awesome' one day when he was being anything but awesome. It was during my dark period. Sarcasm and snark were my crutches. I had been battered by Life for a couple of years. We had lost two babies, our house was falling down around us, I had some weird medical things going on and Mr. Awesome was recovering from brain damage after a fall off our roof. We were a mess. I was depressed and angry and nothing, NOTHING he did was right. So in a fit of sarcasm I called him 'Mr. Awesome.'

And then I called him that again and again. And then I called him 'Mr. Awesome' without any sarcasm in my tone. And then the weirdest thing started to happen, he started becoming awesome. For serious! Or he was awesome the whole time and I just didn't recognize it for what it was. Kind of like the chicken and the egg. Either way, he was awesome and I was calling it like I was seeing it.

Its been about 5 years since I first called him Mr. Awesome and this has been the best 5 years of our marriage. Coincidence? I don't think so. When I started focusing on the best parts of my partner, on the best parts of our life together my depression and anger began to lift. I no longer needed sarcasm and snark as my crutches. Instead I enveloped myself with joy and thankfulness for This One Life I get to live and This One Life became amazing.

Clearly, life still has challenges. I still had cancer and went through treatment. Mr. Awesome still does things that annoy me. My kids still disobey. I still make mistakes and disappoint people. Life still happens but I choose to celebrate the good and walk through the bad with as much grace and dignity as I can.

Seeing my life and the transformation that has occurred in each one of us when we chose to focus on the good and call what isn't as though it were has inspired me to carry this idea beyond This Random House. I have tried to look past the irritating behaviours of people in my world and focus on their strengths. I have tried to see beyond who they are to who they could be, who they want to be and you know what? My world is full of superheroes!

These capeless wonders are walking the halls of my schools, driving the streets of my town, sitting in the pews of my church. Magnificent people with joy and hope and kindness are everywhere!  People capable of super human feats of grace, generosity and forgiveness are everywhere I look. They are resilient, they are strong, they are beautiful ... but they are hidden in their everyday humanness.

You have to look through grace to see them, but they're there.

And so am I.

“Don't go on discussing what a good person should be. Just be one.”
― Marcus AureliusMeditations

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