Normal is a Town in Illinois

I used to hear Normal is a setting on the dryer.

But I like this even better because DH is from Illinois and I use that fact to explain a lot of things about him. The other day, Little Sir pointed out that Daddy was wearing socks and Mommy and Austin were not. “That’s because Daddy is from Illinois.”

When I clean the stove, I stack the burners. It really bugs DH that I do this. I mean, it’s like a thing for him that I do not put the burners back on the stove. He also puts peanut butter on his bread to eat with Chili.

It must be because he’s from Illinois.

The novel I am editing features a woman named Julia who keeps trying to be normal. But she can’t seem to find what normal is.

She is not from Illinois.

I can relate. It seems to me that so much of my life is not normal. My parents divorced when I was 2. Throughout elementary school, this was not normal. By Junior High, the parents of my peers were catching up with mine, but still.

We moved around a lot. I had three schools in three cities in sixth grade. And we weren’t military. This was not normal.

My first marriage ended after only two years. I was divorced with a 6 month old. That did not feel normal. But the life I was leading married to him wasn’t normal either. So given the options, I took the healthiest abnormal life I could.

DH and I were pretty much divorced- just waiting for the judge to sign the papers. And now we’re back together. That’s not normal. But why stick with normal when a miracle is available?

I have decided that unless you’re diagnosed and meds are in order (and I know a few of those), then normal is probably over rated. And feeling abnormal is normal.

Letting go of the definition of normal is so freeing. Living in the IS rather than judging it as normal (which is a judgmental euphemism for right) is so much work.

Julia- my character- she has a road to travel (Interstate 5 to be precise) to figure this out, but she’ll get there.

And so will we all. Whether we find it in Illinois or not.