Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Just Plain Jane Christine?

normal:- adj

usual; regular; common; typical

For most of my life I have always wanted to be normal.  I didn't want to be the only divorced kid in a small community; I didn't want to be the chubby tall girl; I didn't want to be in special education classes (what up title 2 reading and math...cue 'look at me now' music); I didn't want to be seen in any way, shape or form as being different.  Most recently, I didn't want to be the 23 year old medical science project anymore.

Growing up I didn't  understand that being normal was:

  1.  boring
  2.  didn't make those college essays jump off the page
  3.  a pretty vague definition
  4.  was not exactly in my future
  5. overrated

The older I got the more I became to realize even though I looked like others my age - I physically felt different.  I felt caged in unable to live my life - my heart weighed down with pain and sadness despite my upbeat manner.  It secretly influenced my life for years only to later control my day to day scenes.

It has been 5 weeks since I left the hospital after my surgeries, a very long and trying 5 weeks but I got through them.  I got passed collapsed lung scares, fluid filled lung scares, blood clot scares, physical therapy downers, and post op pain, numbness, low energy and less than positive demeanor.  Lets not get things twisted, I still struggle with down days, pain, being tired easily, having trouble breathing, and can't really use my arms to lift anything, but for the first time yesterday I felt normal

Yesterday was the first time I decided to french braid my hair all fancy like.  As far as I can remember, it was the first time ever my hands didn't go numb, tingle, get heavy, turn ghost white, or become cold.  I know it doesn't sound like much, but that dose of normalcy is exactly what I needed to refocus my heart and brain back into believing that being my broken self was okay. 

This past 5 weeks, I think I finally learned that being 'normal' doesn't truly exist given the basic definition.  Being normal is what you do daily to thrive in your environment given your own personal and unique situation.

My surgical scars help remind me that my journey in life is not typical or common but is my normal, my unparalleled experience. 


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