From the age of 2, until he went to kindergarten, our youngest wore a Superman cape. Not just once-in-a-while, but every day of his life, all day long and everywhere we went. Upon occasion he might switch it up and wear a batman shirt with his Superman cape. In my son’s world the Superman cape was the perfect accessory to any superhero costume. I got so used to seeing my youngest son wearing a Superman cape that I was more likely to notice if he was not wearing it.
Being Superman’s Mom had its moments and could be taxing at times. It meant making numerous new capes as old ones wore out. Kissing boo boos resulting from trying to “fly” down the stairs and vigorous discussions on the need to remove the cape so Superman could take a bath. However, I was to learn these issues paled when compared to the responsibilities and embarrassment that came with being Superman’s big brother.
Pajamas in the Park
I must preface this story with a weather report. It was late July, hot and humid. Our oldest was across the street, in the park playing with friends. Our youngest came flying down the stairs, yelling, “I’m going over to the park!”
“Remember to look both ways…” Superman was out of sight before I could finish my warning. When the boys came in for lunch, I overheard big brother chastising little brother, “You better go get your clothes. You can’t just leave them in the park.”
That is a statement that gets a mother’s attention. I turned and was about to ask about clothing being left in the park when I discovered youngest son wearing wintertime Superman pajamas, soaked through with sweat. His hair was dripping, his face, bright red.
Superman’s Big Brother
“Mom, I am so embarrassed!” Superman’s big brother marched into the kitchen. “He came over to the park wearing long pants, long-sleeved shirt and those little blue plastic glasses from the pretend doctor bag. Then, in front of everyone, he took his Clark Kent clothes off and ran around in his Superman pajamas yelling, Superman will save the day!”
Pointing a finger at Superman big brother declared, “You need to grow up!”
I’m Not Ready
By now I had undressed little Superman. He was sitting on the kitchen counter next to the sink and I was applying a cool damp washcloth to his head. Trying to stifle a giggle I said, “Being Superman’s big brother must be difficult.”
My oldest looked at me as if I had lost my mind. “You do know he’s not Superman.”
I quickly covered my young son’s ears. “But it’s so much fun to pretend.” I whispered. “I hope your haven’t forgotten how to pretend my dear.”