Adapting to Normal

Or, I should say, adapting to abnormal, as if it’s normal.

A lot of (ahem) interesting images come up on the google search for "normal." This one really made me laugh. Others, that I won't post, made me want to barf.

I was discussing with a friend this past weekend about how the terms “normal” and “fair” just don’t mean a whole lot on their own. They have to be used in comparison to something else, and even then, everyone has their take on what’s normal and what’s fair, whether it comes to the perception of a situation, the way we live our lives, who is right and wrong, our self-image, and the list goes on and on.

In my case, I have adapted to a normal way of life, for me, that tells others that I am scared about my own safety in our home. When our guests visited last week, I saw my actions through their eyes. Locking the front door after they came inside. Reminding them to get any valuables out of the line of sight in their car. Getting electronics packed away when we left the house for an outing. Securing the back door. Double checking to make sure I had set the alarm.

I watched myself take these abnormal actions, and heard myself say over and over to them,Β  “I have to do this, but we’ve never had any problems here.”

These things are steps I take to myself feel better, even though I know it looks crazy to those who can’t understand my context. Knowing that nothing has ever happened, knowing we’ve not been bothered even when we’ve let our guard down, knowing that if something did ever happen we would ultimately be okay because we have a strong community — it’s still not enough to let my guard down in all areas concerning the security of our house. I know I probably made my guests wonder if they were actually safe in the fortress I had created before their eyes, and I regret that discomfort I probably caused them.

I wonder how this analogy extends to other parts of my or others’ lives. What are the habits I hold that are completely unnecessary-looking to someone else? What actions do I take on a daily basis that baffles others? What are the things that others do that I can’t understand, but that they can’t help but doing? It’s certainly something to consider again, as I have taken the time in the past to reflect on my actions (if you’ve read this blog at all, you know this).

One thing I am trying to make a more normal occurrence in my life is getting back into expressing my creativity. I tried to start a little crafting group, but I got too busy to really get it get it going, so I will aim to start that up after I get back from our upcoming vacation. I’ve been working on a painting that is 3 by 4 feet, and you can see its progress in previous posts.

Here’s today’s update!

I've been filling in all the colors of the buildings. It feels so good to get more done on this painting!

A zoom-out:

Lots of fun warm colors! I love mixing colors to see what happens. πŸ™‚

I’ll take a picture with a real camera once it’s finished. Right now, I’ve been using my phone.

My last thought is about someone else’s “normal.” I really admire people who follow their dreams and find happiness there — doing what they love becomes their normal. I noticed that my neighbor, who is also my friend on Facebook, became a fan of something called k.f.d. design. Curious, I took a look. The woman/girl (I would say girl, because she looks to be around my age, but hey, she might want to be called a woman) who writes this blog shows all the fun she’s having while doing what she loves! It’s fascinating and inspirational! So, I thought I’d give her a little shout out just in case anyone checking out my blog (all 8 of you) wants to see some really neat artwork she’s doing on people’s walls and on furniture she finds. She also has a keen eye for colors that work well in her home. I am feeling inspired to share what I’m working on because she is, and I’m going to keep an eye out for other creatives out there who are blogging. πŸ™‚

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