I totally concur with this unknown author, however my “two minutes” was more like twenty years, give or take. My friends and family might argue that I haven’t been normal for far longer than that, but boy was I trying.
I might attribute my “need for normal” to growing up in an “abnormal” household. My beloved, yet crazy as a loon Gma (her words) did her damndest keeping us all in line, but in the side-by-side comparison to my mostly white, mostly affluent friends at our mostly Catholic grade school, it was sort of obvious which few of us didn’t fit in.
The funny thing is that the majority, if not all, of the kids thought I was normal. I had tons of friends; I was popular; I was a natural leader; I had the cutest boyfriend. But in order to get all those things, or so I thought, you must hide all the different things about you. And to really seal the deal, I became a perpetual people pleaser; that was second grade.
Discovering I was a lesbian was a fairly inconvenient roadblock on the path to normalcy in the mid-to-late 90’s, but besides that I went to a local college where I knew I’d already have friends; I majored in a subject I didn’t love because it was “practical;” I worked in careers that didn’t suit me because they paid the bills and had decent benefits; I even stayed in relationships that I knew weren’t working because I convinced myself that perhaps I was asking for too much.”
… Or not?
When I finally stopped beating myself up about not enjoying waking up to an alarm, not loving long days, weeks and months at a job I’m not passionate about, not settling in a relationships that didn’t feel like all I imagined it should, I felt lighter and freer from the confines I’d inadvertently locked myself in.
NORMAL IS OVERRATED. And while we’re at it, SAFE IS ALSO OVERRATED. Both things I would have read and ignored because on the outside I was different and cool, with my tattoos and piercings, surfing/snowboarding, and partying. I had edge, damnit.
Yet in every other dimension, I played safe, and admittedly sorry.
And the worse part was, I knew it. Deep down I knew that I had used every excuse in the book to never live up to my full potential, but I had tricked myself into believing that I was doing the right thing. Because it was safe.
… And safe is normal.
I leave you with this: If any or all of this sounds familiar, do yourself a favor and get off the normal bus. The safe train. Easy street altogether. Now, you don’t have to quit your job to “start exploring your options.” Yet. I’m merely suggesting you turn off the TV and sign up for a class, or dust off that old guitar, or buy yourself that camera. When you are in your right brain, you awaken your intuition. When you begin to recognize that intuition, you will learn to navigate life through your gut and your heart rather than your safe and foolishly simple head. In the next 48 hours, either do something or line something up that you’ve been wanting to do for a long frickin’ time. My guess is you’ll probably feel a little different. Good different. And then go find more of that.
“Great spirits have always encountered violent opposition from mediocre minds.” – einstein
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*This guy knows a little something about being different aka awesome!