Wednesday, 21 May 2014

First things first, I'm going to apologise for not posting in nearly a week, I've been ill. Secondly, I'm going to apologise, in-advance, for the amount of time I will spend in this post whining about that fact that I've been feeling slightly under-the-weather with a lost appetite, and having developed the inability to regulate my own body temperature (you can just tell it was man-flu).

I can't be the only one that, when ill, forgets what it's like being 'normal'? I forget what it feels like to not have to blow my nose every five seconds, walk about without aching like an OAP (no offence to any old girl that stumbles across this). I can't remember what it feels like to not have to ingest a pack of soothers (leading to another 'sticky' situation A.K.A the runs, the squits, etc.), or keep rubbing that disgustingly-nostalgic Vickes into my chest (BLARGHHHHHH).

All this 'cold' malarky got me thinking about being 'normal' and how its so precious to us. Whenever something goes wrong (or someone gets sick) we'll say 'hey don't worry, everything will be back to normal soon!' But what is 'normal', and why is it so important?

'Normal' changes depending on the circumstances; for myself, 'normal' right now would quite literally mean annihilating this cold with one solitary Lemsip (no hope). Even then, is that 'normal' your 'normal'? (Bare with me, I'm not quite sure where I'm heading with this... I can definitely feel a hypothetically deep metaphor brewing and it's getting me really excited. I've plunged ever-deeper into the depths of sadness.)

'Normal' is an idea that some old guy had one day (lets be honest it was probably Einstein). It formed a little safe haven for society and so long as nothing strayed outside this, everything was cushty (a very British term meaning dandy, swell, super). If someone or something was classified 'normal' then it was totally cool and it wouldn't hurt anyone. As we've seen, throughout history, if someone of something stood in the way of this idea, then they were abnormal. They (or it) were most likely subsequently exhumed and exterminated by society through fear of what this difference would bring (witchcraft anyone?).

Now, thankfully, we're in a far more accepting and understanding society (don't get me wrong, it's still got a hell of a long way to go when it comes to equality on ALL fronts (sexuality, gender, ethnicity, to name a few)) But 'normal' still forms a prison in our minds. It's a restriction we've place don ourselves (sometimes for good and sometimes for bad reasons) to feel 'safe'. 

Before I lost weight, I felt trapped in some sort of pseudo-prison cell formed by what was 'normal'. There were a lot of things I wouldn't even attempt because it wasn't 'normal' for a 'fat person' to try, like sports. I wouldn't go on theme park rides in case I wouldn't fit, or go on log flumes just in case my clothes got all wet and clung to my lumpy bumpy bits. This was all in pursuit of 'normal'.


If I could tell my 16 year-old self one thing, I'd tell him:"don't let other people's opinions form a prison of 'normal' because god knows that's so boring and being weird in the future is what gets you some of the best friends you could ask for... Oh, and always remember that it's your mum's birthday on the 16th of EVERY November (tattoo it on your arm if you need to) because you will forget, and mum will be 'disappointed' (ouch)"

I've learned to say 'no to normal' but it's taken me such a long time. I don't want you to read this and think 'oh god he walks around head-to-toe in black, listening to heavy rock, and wearing make-up' because I don't (that doesn't mean I can't, but this may be someone else's 'normal' or safe have and who am I to say otherwise!) Wouldn't it be a whole new level of cool if we all felt way less restricted by 'normal'? Yeah, in an ideal world we'd all be doing what we wanted, when we wanted, but if you could be slightly less normal (whether that means doing something, wearing something, being someone) how would you change?

∆ Thanks for taking some time to read this, and sorry for the lack of posting recently! ∆