There are some things that are all in our minds. They don’t really exist. It’s just something we make up. One of those things is the idea of what is normal. What does it look like? Who decided that it looks a certain way? Many of us work through the list of normal things expected of us. But, who created this standard? And why do we push toward it so hard? What happens when you decide that this normal isn’t your normal?
This is definitely my story. I did all the things expected of me. It was important to follow the path laid out for me. A part of me has always known that I wanted other things though. Things that were different from what was “normal”. I tend to dream
big HUGE. The things I want in life are bigger than anything I’ve seen in front of me. I’m not talking about just material things either. Life in general fascinates me and I want to really experience as much of it as possible. My eyes were really opened by the birth of my kids. Kids have a way of making you get really introspective. I began to look at what I wanted for them. And realized I wanted more for them than I was allowing myself to dream up for me. Why?
I know that it’s not out of the ordinary to want more for our kids than we had ourselves. What I realized though is that the more I want and work for in my own life expands the possibilities of what my children will want and work for themselves. I want to change what normal looks like for them and make it clear there isn’t just one route. I don’t want them to feel that the route that makes sense for them isn’t a good one. There are so many ways to a great life. Theirs doesn’t have to be mine. Mine doesn’t have to be my parents.
There’s something about getting older, that made it crystal clear that normal doesn’t exist. I’m not normal. You’re probably not either. Deal with it. Embrace it. Celebrate it. No, for real. Like so many other things, normal is what you make it. The longer we stay cooped up in the box that someone else created for us, the longer we go without living the life we really want. I think my outlook has changed with age, location (Los Angeles), motherhood and influences.
Age: The older I get, the more I read, the more I learn. The practice of continually learning can only broaden your horizons.
Location: Living in Los Angeles since 2002 has exposed me to so much. Different people, careers, outlooks on life. The city itself is very progressive too and supports so many alternative versions of normal. I mean, this place is crawling with actors, entrepreneurs and entertainers. All of those careers call you to defy normal.
Motherhood: Having children can change your whole outlook on life and causes you to take a good look at your own. Like my marriage, my children have been a huge mirror for me. They show me all of me – good and bad. It’s up to me to decide to change the things I see.
Influences: I have surrounded myself with thinkers. These people are in real life and online. I have found that having people around me who ask questions and take chances help me stretch myself. I’ve always been that person. My journey to Los Angeles is proof of that. But getting comfortable in life can make you lose that part of yourself.
When creating your own normal, what does it look like? Tell me, what would need to change to create the normal you want?