Wednesday, September 21, 2016

The Normal Life

I wake up before the sun, but that's okay, because I have slept all night. It is the start of a week of daysides, during which the world and I will be on the same schedule. It is confusing, and thrilling. It is exhilarating and wearying. It is the change we all need to shake things up a little. 

I am constantly being told how great it would be if I worked "a normal schedule," so that I might sleep when others slept, dress when others dressed, communicate when others communicated. But what I am realizing, even more on these dayside days than during my overnight days, is that "normal" is really just a word we use to understand on our own terms. The people on the buses at midnight remind me that for many, overnight IS normal. My kids' developing morning skills remind me that at least for now, my working while they sleep IS normal. So, this week, as I face masses of commuters and an early morning wake up, I realize that "normal" is just a way to differentiate what happens in our lives. Perhaps this week is normal. Or perhaps it is the least normal part of my life, simply a diversion to help wake me up. Either way, my job is to adjust to it. Either way, my sense of balance depends on believing it is normal. And I suppose that is what "normal" really means--that which we can manage to balance, when everything else shifts.

Is this a normal week? Perhaps in your world, but not as much in mine. Because normal is as much about how you catch life as it is about what life happens to throw at you. 

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