Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Next To Normal (No, Not The Musical)

Today, I began a week of work. Which seems not such an odd thing. People do that all the time, every week, with nothing earth-shattering about it. Yet, after many weeks of unscheduled hiatus, and many weeks more of on-and-off hiatus before that, today felt bigger than just a regular Monday. We work hard to make ourselves and our kids adaptable, and somehow, in just a few months, my kids and I had adapted to my not necessarily beginning a week of work on Monday. So today felt good with its return to normalcy, yet odd with its redefinition of what normalcy actually means...

Is "normal" working the same hours and days as the people around you? (Have I ever had that "normal?")

Is "normal" knowing what you need to do, so that you can accomplish it efficiently, or reacting to every curve ball, so that you're never quite sure what you'll accomplish?

Is "normal" knowing which bases you need others to cover and which you can cover yourself?

Is "normal" having a plan for how home will work with work, and sticking with that plan?

Is "normal" feeling good about your work or simply feeling good that you're working?

Is "normal" being available to field the crises and semi-crises, or being totally unavailable and trusting that they will work themselves out?

Is "normal" being tired from work or being tired from wanting work?

Is "normal" making dinner before dinner time or throwing together dinner before the time for dinner has passed?

Is "normal" introducing yourself as where you work or as who you are?

These days, I guess there really is no "normal," since "normal" seems to change every day. The key, then, is adapting, making each day right, even when there's no clear way to make it "normal." What will tomorrow's "normal" be, or next week's? I have no idea. Perhaps it's time to start accepting that life from now on will simply be "next to normal."

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