(After a no good very bad day, I needed a new day. Welcome Tuesday)
N (not) O (only) R (right) M (more) A (about) L (living)
Hey, I am not creative but I am all about acronyms. Normal has meant so many things to me over the years of my ED. Normal, however, has always been something I have told myself to strive for in the past. If you were just normal, if you could just eat normally, if you could just act normal, if your brain just functioned normally, if you were just normal.
But I never really understood or even knew what normal was. In high school, normal was being exactly like those track girls who ate healthier snacks and put their time into training. In college, it was about being super aware of calories consumed, what I looked like and how I exercised. Each year there were little tweeks to normal, but normal was always based on outside expectations. Normal became a definition defined by someone else. What I didn’t understand and I what I struggled with was trying to figure out why my mind would not let things go like other’s did. How could people just eat that without freaking out? How could people only do x and feel ok? How could people wear that and be comfortable? By feeling so out of the norm, I hyper focused on what I thought could bring me closer to that norm. In that case, it was ED behaviors. Sad part was, it brought me farther from normal and there began the never ending cycle.
Looking at that now, no wonder I had no idea who I was. When I started striving for normal, I started to define myself by others. When I entered treatment, I remember sitting down with the therapist and asking why me? Why can’t I just be normal and not be put in a place like this struggling at such a high degree? Why can’t I just be normal? What I was expecting was for her to go all scientific on me and say, well your brain is just different, you had different life experiences, or worse that I wasn’t even close to hitting normal. Instead, she threw it right back at me and asked well what is this normal you talk about? I sat there, stared at her and honestly had no idea. I could tell you who I thought was normal but didn’t know what normal meant.
I think over the past year or so of recovery, I began to realize that normal is about living. We all, I still do, get skewed on what normal is. The blog world, as much as I love it, is not almost the most ‘normal’ when it comes to behaviors or actions. It just isn’t. Normal can’t be described by things that it is or things that it is not. Normal is life without manipulation, life without an over concentration on one part over the other. Normal is about living life being genuine to who you really are.
This was all brought on by a little chat with a friend. Sometimes we all need those reality checks, those reminders that what we may feel is normal is not – and worse off, striving for that normal will get us absolutely no where.
As I said, I no longer strive for normal. I strive for life.
Question: How would you describe normal?