18 February 2015

Time to bury the word Normal

"You should cut your hair. You should wear nicer clothes. Those are toys for girls, you should play with toys for boys.  Don't you want to fit in? Don't you want to have friends?"
"Don't you want to be NORMAL?"


It's a word that we all use.  One single word.  Just one.  But what a horrible and deadly word it is.

We use it to describe our day. To describe someone else...or to describe how we want to be.  Society encourages this.  All while telling us to be embrace our uniqueness and differences, it tells us that we should strive to be NORMAL.  To fit in.  In school, in work, in church...wherever we go.  Society tells us that we should all strive to be NORMAL.  That it's better to be NORMAL.  NORMAL is an ideal.  And that ideal is absolute and total bullshit.

I heard the word NORMAL a lot growing up.  Hell, I heard it a lot even after I was done growing up.  People tossed the phrase at me like it was candy.  "You need to look like them.  You need to act like they do.  Be more like them.  FIT IN!  Be NORMAL!"  I heard that from people that meant well and wanted me to be happy and successful.  I heard it from people that didn't give a shit about me at all and were disgusted that I couldn't be shoved into a box.  Whatever they meant, it had the same effect.  I started not to stand out.  To not embrace what made me, me.  I started fading into the background.  To slowly have my spirit die.  To slowly kill me.

I'm sure some of you are thinking that maybe I'm going a bit over the top with this.  That "fitting in" and "normal" aren't the same thing.  But stop and think about it for a moment.  How many times has someone told you that you should fit into the norm? How many times have you wished you could be NORMAL like a friend of yours?  They may sound different, but we often use the word "NORMAL" to mean to fit in.  And how horrible is that?  Why should we hide what makes us, us?

And I get it, there are some things that are norms that are good, like not being a sociopath or a bully.  But as to the rest?  Normal is bullshit.  It causes the death of identity. Death of a spirit. Death of a soul. It bullies us until nothing is left but despair and darkness.

So what do we do?  Do we continue to tell people to be normal?  Or do we let people soar? To discover who and what they are.  To discover what they might be. It is time for the word normal to die a quick and painless death.  It is time to give it a funeral and to move on. To encourage people to be themselves.

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