My superpower

My friend Andrea launched her gorgeous new site, Superhero Life, today and to celebrate she put the call out asking us a question:

What’s your superpower?

There are many things I feel i’m pretty good at, but the one trait that seems to be infused through everything I do is… truth-telling.

I had a few moments when I was writing the book when I worried that I was sharing too much. When I wrote about the stuff I wasn’t proud of — failed friendships, family difficulties — or embarassed by — anecdotes about my body were particularly hard to share — I wondered if I was going to regret being so open, laying it all out for public consumption. I have absolutely no idea why I share the way i do — it just feels very natural to do it. As I wrote about recently, i don’t share everything, but truthfulness comes up in my work again and again.

You want to talk about grief? I’ll tell you everything I felt and experienced. PMS? Easy peasy. Why being single for eight years is actually rather hard? Bring it on. That I rarely shave my legs? Done.

One of the most challenging side-effects of our 24/7 access to others on the internet is how easy it is to think that “everyone else” has a perfect life. We can curate our lives in social media, showing the bestest shiny parts and editing out all the less-than-stellar moments. Who hasn’t scrolled through their Facebook feed and thought shit, everyone else’s lives are so awesome and mine is so boring. I only have to glance at my Twitter feed on the wrong day to feel like an absolute failure. <—- truth.

Sometimes I have to unfollow people on Instagram because their photos/lives are so photogenic and fabulous I end up feeling crap about my little single existence. <—- more truth.

But then I also know that others may look at my Instagram feed and think it’s all rainbows and unicorns over here in Conwayland. It’s not. Some days are really great. Some days just plain suck. You know — a normal life :) On the sucky days I tend not to post any images to Instagram, or post anything to social media at all. Maybe that’s letting the side down, somehow, I don’t know. I just try to get the balance right between being truthful and moaning.

So yeah… truth-telling. Lately I’ve been feeling the urge to do even more of it here on this blog.

But I won’t be posting photos of my unshaved legs on Instagram. <—- the truth to end all truths.


What’s your superpower?

22 responses
  1. Marianne

    Yes! This is definitely one of your superpowers and you use it for good. I for one am grateful.

  2. Nelly

    But there’s nothing wrong with hairy legs – seriously! I never shave my legs – and most of the women I know don’t either – and no we’re not patchouli wearing hippies, just “normal” people. But isn’t it sad that we feel that we have to somehow apologize or feel sheepish about it.

  3. Sherry

    lol on the unshaven legs!! Rock on with that one! I don’t mind mine until I can feel the “prickle” coming through my pjs and then I know it’s time.

    Yes, you are a truth teller in a most amazing way. The fact that you are lends credibility to everything you say and people know that you are exactly who you seem to be.

    My superpower? Encouraging. I’m always encouraging others to be who they are, to say what they think and feel and to be “okay” with it all. I encourage my children and my friends. Hellz yeah, I even encourage myself. Off to check Andrea’s new sit.

  4. Sherry

    or her site…whichever comes first! lol!

  5. Gerri Smalley

    I’m a child-whisperer. You know like the horse-whisperer? Yeah, In over 20 years, I’ve never met a child I could not soothe or put down for a nap. Pretty amazing that power.
    Thanks for being a truth teller. One of my recent posts talked about just that… xxO

  6. Kyra

    I need a worksheet or class to unveil my superpower. Working on figuring it out.

  7. angela

    My superpower? Listening!

  8. Steven Andrew

    The reason I love your blog is because of your honesty. I relate to it a lot and it’s something I want to improve on. It’s nice to see someone so honest!

  9. Jen

    Oh this is definitely your superpower, from what I can tell. And you use it for good, not evil (re: shaved leg pics) :)

    Great question… I think I’ll ponder this one a bit to see what I can come up with.

  10. Fiona

    This is so great. And funny too. You never seem to express the bald truth in a moany way, you always make it light-hearted and tackleable and so not worth worrying about compared to the important things. That’s why I read here really.

    My superpower has to be determination. There are a long line of strong women in our family, and once I latch on to something I believe in, I’ll follow it til the end. Some of my most satisfying achievements have come from being in that zone.

  11. La plume et la page

    My “superpower”? I don’t know exactly… Thinking that tomorrow will be better than today?

  12. Cat

    my super power?
    after walking in the dark for a good portion of my life
    I have discovered my superpower is my own matter what, it forever shines….it took me a while to figure that one out : )

    love the truth in this post
    so refreshing!

    love and light

  13. Nina

    Hmm, good question. I’m pretty good at chewing on a problem for a long (sometimes VERY long) time until a creative solution presents itself. Sometimes I’m not even aware that I was still working on something until the answer appears seemingly out of the blue. I’m also a world-class grower of leg hair! The level of shame attached to leg hair is completely ridiculous, given that we all have it naturally.

  14. Marjorie


    You certainly do have a gift for taking all that truth and telling it in a most positive way. I love you for that!

    My superpower would be compassion. I don’t always no what the right thing to do is, but I always feel a sense of compassion and love for the people I meet. Even the quirky teenagers I meet and their quirkier parents ;)

  15. Marie Landry

    “shit, everyone else’s lives are so awesome and mine is so boring.” <– Yep. There are days when I just want to stay the hell away from Facebook and Twitter because if I see one more person sharing their happy, shiny life, I feel like I'm going to lose it. I'm happy for them, and I'm glad they're happy – especially those people who I know have had tough times and really deserve to finally be happy – but god, sometimes it's just like 'when is it MY turn to have a happy, shiny life?' Anyway…you have an amazing super power and you use it for good! You help and inspire so many people, you really are like a superhero. I'm not really sure what my superpower is…is creativity a superpower? I keep seeing these images on Facebook that say 'I'm a writer. What's your superpower?' and I think YEAH, I create things, I build worlds, develop characters, entertain people…that's a pretty awesome thing. Maybe I'll discover more superpowers while unravelling. :-)

  16. Emily

    So very true, we only show the highlight reel of our life on social media, not the nitty gritty I’m spotty and feel like crap today days. Nice to remember that everyone’s human :)


  17. Alexis


    I always come to your page when I feel the need for a friend. And by letting us know that sometimes you have crappy days too, it just makes us feel that much better.

    So, thank you, for your honesty, both on this blog and in your book. They really do speak to me.

  18. Gio_be

    I am a total truth teller when it comes to writing as well. I bare my soul without problem! But I think my true super power is enthusiasm and persuasiveness! I can convince people of anything. When I first started drinking green smoothies in the office I spoke so much about them and their benefits, I got everyone hooked. Co-workers started making their own at home and bringing them to the office. My colleague from South-Korea calls me “convincing eyes”. :) That’s my super power.

  19. Sara

    Superpower, me? I do have a tendency – without even trying – to shake up other people’s truths, assumptions etc. about themselves and life in general. It’s not a fun ‘power,’ but there it is.

  20. Lisa

    My superpower is patience. My Dad used to say it and I have been working with the elderly for 20+ I guess it’s true. :)

  21. Erin

    I think that my superpower would probably be breaking big things down. Whenever there’s an issue, a situation, a project, I always start off with breaking it down into bite sized chunks and start creating a list or a calendar of what needs to get done. So maybe my real super power is being practical :)
    My friend’s joke that my first reaction to any issue or any work to be done is “okay, so what’s the priority?”

  22. Sherry Richert Belul

    Susannah, hi. I’m just skipping around to all the amazing women who helped celebrate Andrea’s launch (!!!) last week. It’s great to meet you and I love your truth-telling superpower! It is so refreshing when people tell the truth, isn’t it. Like I can breathe more deeply. Like I can unbuckle that belt and be a little flabby. Ahhhh. Thanks.

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