Seven-year-old Thing2 swears he can fly. It’s one of his many superpowers and one of the few I don’t get to see with my own eyes. I believe him when he says he can because I’ve seen proof of most of his other superpowers. If he says he can fly, he does. He’s a superhero, after all.
He doesn’t usually trade in the garden-variety abilities found in the pages of many comic books. His powers make music in his head – as evidenced by a spontaneous pre-dinner ritual of jumping and pirouetting around the living room. They enable instant superhero wardrobe changes the moment anyone in the family needs cheering up or consoling. He pulls impromptu party ideas for four out of his latest favorite movie and new worlds from his dog-eared sketchbook.
I was an easy convert to the Ministry of Encouragement over at the Open Group for Bedlam Farm Facebook. I’ve come to think of encouragement as a source of magic, as much as a belief system, however, because just like other magic, encouragement grows, sometimes producing unexpected results.
This is especially true for your average superhero.
Thing2 is my shadow whenever I pull out my notebook, and I bought him his own soon after starting my blog. With my ‘borrowed’ colored pencils and stapler and a super-powered imagination, he’s written and published dozens of books. Superheroes are in short supply these days, so I encourage all his creative adventures. I was a bit surprised, however, when my superhero came to me seeking his own blog.
Forgetting the ministry’s edicts, I said I’d set one up for him and then got up to do the dishes.
A few weeks later and a week after that, he came to me still wanting a blog. Saturday, he got his wish, and Powerman, The Journal of an Average Superhero was conceived. Powerman has mom’s help with the tech end, but the images and ideas will be his.
I’m not sure what new abilities he’ll discover with this endeavor, but I know the power of encouragement. Someday, somehow, it will help him leap something a lot bigger than an ordinary building.