The Myths We All Buy Into…’Normal’

by Michelle Acker on June 10, 2012

in Learning the Art of Living,Thought Provoking

Heavy Load Angela Cirrone Smith via Compfight

I’ve come to realize that there are certain myths

in life that we all buy into…

 

Here’s one:

“Normal…”

 

You know the one? 

Where you can’t wait until everything gets back to “normal”?

The one where you can’t wait to someday have a “normal” schedule?

Or get a “normal” amount of sleep at night?

Or have a “normal” you-fill-in-the-blank-whatever?

I realized what a myth this “normal” life is yesterday afternoon.  Last week was the first week of summer vacation for my boys, and my first week of summer schedule at work.  My boss is kind enough to let me adjust my schedule during the summer so I can still enjoy time with my boys.  He just wanted to know when it would start.  June 4th, I replied with confidence.  Then I had to come back 10 minutes later and explain, “Well, June 4th, but really it’s not going to be a normal week because the boys will be up here for sports camp, so I’ll work while they’re at camp, and that means it’ll be a totally crazy schedule this week.” *sigh*

The boys and I had a fun week last week, but I was looking forward to today starting our first “normal” week of summer.  Then I realized we’re volunteering each morning for a an hour with the Feed Our Kids mission.  Huh.  Okay, so not normal this week either.  Next week will be a “normal” week though!  Aaaaahhhh.  Finally!

Oh, wait.  The boys are going on vacation with Nana next week. 

NOT “normal” after all.

That’s when it hit me.

“Normal” is a myth.

Normal is a mirage that we all think is there, and we keep reaching for it, and just as soon as we think we’ve almost grasped it, it fizzles into thin air.

Why do we keep doing this to ourselves?  Measuring everything up against this standard of “normal” that almost never happens because life gets in the way, schedules get changed, someone gets sick, cars need repair… You name it.  The only thing that’s “normal” about life is that it’s always changing.  Just the second you think you’ve got it figured out, you don’t.

And that’s okay. 

It’s okay for life to be NOT normal

if you plan for life to be that way

If you plan to be flexible and just try to enjoy the ride, then not normal is no problem.  The disillusionment only comes when we judge that crazy mixed up life against some mirage of a so-called “normal” life.

Take life as it comes.  Stop judging it against the mirage.

Life is good, even when the crazy sets in and threatens to overwhelm you.  Instead of reaching desparately for something that almost never happens, remember that the only thing that’s “normal” about life is that it’s always changing.

There’s a saying where I used to live: “If you don’t like the weather, just wait a minute.  It will change.”

The same is true for life.  If things are so upside down that you feel like you’re just barely treading water, just hang on.  It’ll change before you know it.  🙂

Something to think about…

 



{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }

Kristen June 11, 2012 at 9:26 AM

Love this one Michelle, it’s so true.

Jessica June 12, 2012 at 7:31 AM

Liked this one so much I posted on my Facebook page! Thank you – for just being YOU and doing what you do 🙂

Positively Alene June 12, 2012 at 7:59 AM

What a blessing to have happened here today. Normal is way over-rated and what is it any way. Enjoy the journey friend – this is beautiful!

BTW – I have a free eBook over at my site called Giving Up Normal if you want to take a looksy!

Enjoy your not-normal week!

Piper June 13, 2012 at 1:35 PM

This is funny!! AND SO TRUE!! We all have our idea of normal….but I realized that my normal is no one else’s normal. I know I am not normal. But that is OK because normal is sooo overrated!

tulip June 14, 2012 at 1:09 AM

You are always making me think. I totally agree. “Normal” is not something that can be grasped so why waste our time. Its not fun to be Normal anyway. Thanks for hosting!

Gail June 14, 2012 at 3:30 AM

Such good points, Michelle. Actually, I think we’re all waiting for “abnormal” because most of us have unpredictable “normals.” : ) We came to Budapest to do ministry and one thing I love to do is walk in the city. But because I injured my knee, I will end up having to avoid walking for about 3 weeks of our 6 weeks here. The funny thing is, this is pretty normal for us…something unexpected “normally” happens! Just another opportunity to rejoice in all things…although I don’t always do it immediately : )

Tereasa June 14, 2012 at 6:19 AM

Oh, this is so good! I keep hearing that normal is just a setting on the dryer, but I’ve checked and it’s not there. Normal really is a myth!

Deb @ Raising Figure Skaters June 14, 2012 at 7:25 AM

Great thoughts, Michelle! I don’t think I’ve ever found “normal,” so I just stopped trying for “normal” … and I’m much happier because of it! 🙂

Laurie Collett June 14, 2012 at 9:44 AM

How true — life is never “normal,” but with God, it is always an adventure!
Thanks for the great post & for hosting the linkup.
God bless,
Laurie

Ms. Kathleen June 14, 2012 at 1:14 PM

I just have to understand that my normal is perfectly abnormal… Great post! Have a wonderful weekend 🙂

Sylvia R June 14, 2012 at 3:54 PM

Boy, could I identify with this today! (And it doesn’t end when the kids get grown up!) I had today all planned. Yeah. But it wasn’t the “normal” day I expected… You know the rest. Thanks, very timely. And thanks for providing this link-up amid all the craziness!

Courtney June 15, 2012 at 6:16 AM

Exactly! What a relief it is to finally realize this and just embrace whatever stage we are in. Great post.

Laura Rath June 15, 2012 at 9:25 AM

“Normal” is a relative term. What’s normal for me isn’t normal for someone else, so I get myself into trouble when I start comparing. I prefer routine weeks, meaning I know what to expect, but there are always the weeks with extra activities and unplanned situations. I guess it’s just part of life. 🙂

Lori June 15, 2012 at 3:40 PM

A “normal” life would be boring. Everyone needs an occasional break from the craziness of life but if that break ended up lasting too long I know that I would want the crazy life back. It makes things much more interesting!

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