Sunday, June 21, 2015

New Normal

Everyone on the planet has a view in their head of what an idyllic normal family is. Yet, despite the Hallmark card kind of perception, few people would define their families as normal or idyllic.

As a survivor, normal goes right out the window. Everything in your life can feel askew when dealing with the weight of trauma or illness throwing everything off balance.

Family, during times of crisis, becomes what you make of it, with who you need it to be. Your normal is whatever you create to survive.

A friend may become a lover, a boyfriend starts to feel like a husband, or a child turns into the primary caregiver. Whatever the dynamic, crisis can shift your version of normal, throwing things both out of alignment or into what feels like the most natural of positions.

Don't beat yourself up for not achieving the idyllic illusion. Don't regret something so elusive. Embrace your new normal, whether fleeting or permanant.

If those who you thought would be close are distant and those previously distant feel closer, redefine your sense of family and your idea of normal. Surround yourself with this redefined family support, whether that family be one of blood or one of unrelated emotional connection.

We all once came from mothers and fathers, and may grow to have brothers and sisters or daughters and sons. But, as we survive, our family may come from something different and be uniquely beautiful, cobbled together through hardships and joy, from family, friends, and strangers, who in your heart evolve to truly become your family.

Normal is for greeting cards and 50's television shows. True support and family in times of crisis often come from surprising sources which are far more powerful then a random ideal.

Allow yourself this normal. Be thankful for it. It is far more precious and affirming then the one you previously imagined, because it is real.

Your heart's family, who weather the storm with you, are the most precious gift of all. Even if they never achieve the un-achievable normal.

Today is Father's Day, take a moment to remember fondly the person or people in your life that guided and protected you. Whether you ever called them father or not, they helped you survive and be you.

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