By Darlene Franklin ~
Psst. Let me tell you a secret. I am—Clash! Bang! BOOM!—WARRIOR WOMAN!
The transformation felt awkward and strange at first, definitely mostly unwanted. This is what happened.
After I received a three-book contract, I did little but eat and write, chewing and spitting out words until I’d spun a cocoon.
What emerged was a broken-down butterfly that couldn’t even walk. So, I retreated to my safe haven. Superman had Smallville. I entered a nursing home.
It’s hard to fly from a wheelchair. But I’m not a nursing home resident who writes; I am writer who happens to live in a nursing home—Warrior Woman!
My agent recently asked me, “You write from a nursing home. So what? How does that make you stronger person, a better writer?”
Here’s my list of superpowers, given to me by the original supernatural power, God Himself.
I have x-ray vision.
My eyesight is far from twenty/twenty. I’m still need glasses. But my ability to see into people has changed. When I ask about the shadow I see on their faces, they spill out the details: a giddy new romance; a struggle with raising children; an abusive background; questions about God; about their sexuality. I catch a glimpse of all of that and more.
I have antennas that reach inside and beyond me.
My feelings scope out my core. Understanding myself and where I’ve come from, as well as seeing God at work, brings acceptance and strength.
The better I understand myself, the better I understand others. If I can identify why I act—and react—the way I do, the better chance I have of changing my response from my gut reaction to what they mean.
I have a world-wide reach.
I live in half of a nursing home room, and I don’t get out much.
Even so, I’ve written about someone living in Canada for an Ireland-based magazine, and God caused my paths to cross with an international leader in Albino awareness from Zimbabwe.
Thanks to the internet, I’m in contact with people all across America and people around the world. God has caused my paths to cross with an Oklahoma Senator, teacher of the Year, and an African poet.
Virtual strangers approach me for articles, interviews, or even just for advice. They (don’t) want to speak, with the nursing home resident, but the Warrior Woman who lives inside her.
Power flows through me to others
Since I moved into the nursing home, I’ve seen more answered prayer too obvious to deny.
Time has passed since I wrote Pray Though the Bible in a Year. Recently, I reached the third chapter of Numbers, concerning first-born sons. My prayer specifically mentioned the possibility of my son moving.
On the day I reached that page, my son was moving from the house he had bought with his wife fourteen years ago.
Only God could arrange that timing.
I wear invisible armor.
I’ve spent years building up armor worthy of a warrior:
Body armor of an unshakeable spirit, even when the doctor warned me I might die during surgery.
A head piece of wisdom, that allows me to see past the obvious.
A shield of joy that replaces disappointment with hope.
All of it super-powered through my faith in God.
Am I a warrior woman? You bet I am. Do I have vulnerabilities, where I fail? Of course, I do. Every super hero has his Kryptonite.
The next time you enter a nursing a home, take an extra look at the people living there. Who knows what super heroes live amongst us?