I recently spent a Sunday afternoon with my kids at the urgent care facility at Colonial Healthcare because my youngest son, Colton, was fussy with an earache. After the standard weigh-in and temperature check, we ended up in the superhero room.
My boys haven't hit the "I love superheroes" phase yet, so I found myself describing the figures on the wall to them.
"This is Batman. This is Superman. And this is Mama."
Of course, "Mama" is Wonder Woman.
Colton, who is 3 years old, looked at me, then looked at the wall, then looked at me again with a puzzled face.
"Mama, that's not you. You don't have blue underwear with stars."
But it got me thinking, and yes, I am sort of a wondrous woman. Hear me out: I have small humans that I have managed to keep alive for the past few years, so that's gotta count for something, right? I work a full-time job and somehow, I manage to get Jacob, 5, to school on time in the morning. (By the way, that means I have to leave by 7 dadgum o'clock Monday through Friday, so don't hate when zombie mama pulls into the parking lot.) I'm also making a concerted effort to participate in school activities, and I try my best to get the kiddos to church on Wednesday night.
It's by the grace of God that everyone gets washed, fed and put to bed at a decent hour each night. (Sometimes dinner is Pop Tarts, but at least it tastes good.)
It's by the grace of God that everyone has clean clothes to wear each day. (Clean, but sometimes stained.)
It's by the grace of God that I'm able to maintain a home and keep such a hectic schedule. (I never said the carpet was vacuumed and all the dishes were washed.)
It's because of God that I work a job in which my co-workers understand when I have to leave early because of whatever family issue happens to happen that day.
So basically, there's never a calm moment in my life, unless we scoot to Grandma's house, and I fall prey to the Lazyboy. I guess my wondrous mama takes pity on me and lets me catch up on some zzzzzs while she entertains the boys.
But my experience is not unique. There are a lot of mamas out there living the same life I am.
I'm just thankful for the support of my husband and parents, because raising a child really does take a village. And single parents who do it all on their own are the superheroes that superheroes look up to.
So day in and day out, I'm going to do my best to stand tall and be the Wonder Woman I need to be, but for now you must excuse me because I'm going online to shop for some blue underwear with stars.
Jessica Stephens works as an editor and designer for The Sumter Item. She is a wife, mother of two boys and proud USC Gamecock.