I saw my therapist on Friday and I have been mulling what she said over in my head for days. She said that I have the ability “to make the abnormal seem normal”. We have long established that I have had quite a few abnormal situations happen in my life. She probably thinks many of them are made up except they can all be proven and follow a flowing timeline. In this case we were talking about when I left home at 17 and lived in a park while still attending high school and going to work.
I told her about it matter of factually and while I explained my daily routine stated that I did the normal things, but happened to live in a park at night. She sort of had this look of shock on her face when she made her statement. She told me it was a viable coping skill, but she seemed a bit troubled by how normal it all was for me.
I absolutely know that living in a park and many things that have happened in my life are not normal, I have always chosen to concentrate on what was normal. Who could possibly figure out how to get past things if they did not? Plus, that specific situation was only temporary (not that I really knew it at the time), and I left home to get away from a situation far worse than living in a park. I was also lucky enough to have great friends that kept my stuff, helped me launder my clothes, and gave me a place to shower. It was only a month or two before an adult figured out what was going on and assisted me as well. The a boy came into my life and his family helped me further. When you concentrate on the good things and moving forward, doors or windows will always open. Is that really a bad thing?
So as I have been going over in my head how many ways I have made the abnormal seem normal as a coping mechanism I have begun to look at all the situations. Ultimately they have all been a badge of honor for me. Why not? I survived and flourished. I have never had anything keep me down and throughout my life I have had the amazing gift of knowing that no matter what comes at me, I will ALWAYS find a way to get out of it. I have friends and family who have never had the abnormal life I have had, never had the struggles I have had, and even late in their lives have never fully understood or been grateful for their accomplishments. They have had minor things that have scared them, but never had the luxury of having to start from the bottom up.
I say luxury, and for some of you it may seem strange. The pure knowledge that nothing can ever keep you down is a gift and is a luxury. If I were to lose my job tomorrow, or become evicted, or loose everything I have built tomorrow, I will be fine and I know I will find a way to ensure my daughter is fine. How many have the gift of knowing that in today’s world? Not many. As a matter of fact there seems to be very few people who even appreciate what they have or even who they are.
So ye, I have a way of making the abnormal seem normal, because I know it’s all temporary. I also know in my bones that I have learned things and will continue to learn things with every crazy, chaotic, and abnormal thing that get thrown at me because I choose my perspective and narrative. My scaffolding is tall, strong, and 100% up to me. I also enjoy my badges and will teach my daughter how to do the same.