August 11, 2008

Welcome Normal

It's funny how quickly we forget. When life is full of storms and heartaches and pain and uncertainties all we pray for is for things to be normal again. For the everyday life that we once took for granted.

And then eventually you settle into that normal life again, usually with some bumps and wrinkles that weren't there before but it's your new normal now and that is ok. And before you know it, it becomes your everyday life that you now take for granted. Again.

As I get farther and farther away from some of the most difficult times in my life as a Mom, when I didn't know what was going to happen to my oldest son, if he was ever going to be even close to normal again, I honestly couldn't imagine living a regular life like we do now. Just two years ago this month he was able to come off his special diet and eat, like, regular food again. He was able to go to a regular school despite being told otherwise, and he was alive. A regular boy. And going to be ok.

It took a long time to settle into that new normal of no more seizures and no more hospitals and no more special diet. Even still I had to pack accordingly for Gray this weekend at the lake (he's allergic to dairy, egg, & nuts) but those diet restrictions seem like nothing. And have become normal, too.

But I still find myself forgetting and slumping about the daily routine. The mundane and the blah. And I forget that this is what I prayed for- to just live like a regular family. For a long time that outfit didn't fit and it wasn't comfortable. But now it does, and I didn't even notice.

I'm not saying that we can't have excitement in our lives- excitement is good. But there have just been many things lately that I've probably not done with my whole heart and now I'm going to make a bigger effort to do so. Because this normal life is something I longed for. And I don't want to take it for granted. I don't know if it will go away again, so I am cherishing it right now. Dishes and dirty laundry and car repairs and crumby floor and all.

Hello, Normal. Please stay a while.

50 comments:

  1. That's a great perspective! Enjoy the Normal.

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  2. yes indeed, normal stay awhile...

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  3. So glad you are enjoying your "normalcy". It's nice to be in that normal-feeling place in life.

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  4. Thank you for the gently reminder. I am in what I call a quiet, peaceful season of my life. Something I have prayed for since losing two of my siblings in the last few years.

    I will do my dishes, laundry and cooking with joy today just thinking about blessed I am. He has given me what I prayed for: Peace, quiet, NORMAL.

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  5. Wow. I feel like you were in my brain on this one. I've been thinking thoughts along these lines for a while. Maybe it will turn into a post someday. Or maybe it will stay hidden.

    Either way, great observations. I never want to take the normal for granted.

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  6. Exactly. The ordinary can tease us into forgetting exactly how many things can go wrong with our lives in the blink of an eye. I embrace the days where everyone I know is healthy, employed, and moderately happy.

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  7. So true! I'm glad you're able to enjoy "normal" now, and hopefully for a long time to come.

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  8. What a great reminder for all of us. Thank you for that. Great perspective!

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  9. I understand about new normal. I agree, let normal stay, please...for both of us.

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  10. Thank you so much for this post Steph! I've been praying for some normalcy and realized that I already have it. Whenever I start to complain about my routine it's hard to stop and realize that, that routine is what keeps me sane and what I've been looking for all along.

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  11. I'm a big fan of normal....

    Blessings~

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  12. Of course normal is about to take on a whole new meaning when you add a baby GIRL to the scene. I have the same story: three boys, followed by a girl. Now we're an even four of each!

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  13. I know what you mean! BTW, My oldest girl is allergic to peanuts, egg and dairy also. Neither hubby nor I had any allergies and she ended up with those?

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  14. So very true Steph. I'm craving normal right now. This move was hellish. I just want some semblance of normal, whatever that is. And I promise, I will not take it for granted. Ever. Again.

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  15. I've been consciously taking time to write down my gratitude each day, something I read about first on Sortacrunchy and then at Holy Experience. I can honestly say I am so much more appreciative of the everyday miracles and blessings in my life. I have been reveling in the everyday, and I love the feeling of it!

    How particularly powerful for you to be able to look back now that you are in your "new normal" and appreicate how far you have come as a family!

    Blessings,
    Steph

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  16. What a wonderful reminder...sometimes it's so easy to take "normal" for granted and call it "boring".

    By the way, I have a contest going on for $100 from Sleepy Wrap that I thought your readers (and you!) might be interested in! Please come by my blog and check it out!

    www.firstimpressionsbaby.com/blog

    Thanks!
    Ash

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  17. Oh don't I know what you're talking about! I need to remember teh same thing: to be thankful for the normal.

    Thank God for normal, even when it's so far from what we once thought it would be!

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  18. God bless you and your family. Enjoy normal:)

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  19. Amen to the mundane normal!!!

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  20. Thank you! I have been trying to get to a new normal, I needed a reminder. Blessings for you and your beautiful family

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  21. I love it. I had a similar thought about we take our normal lives for granted and wrote about it here. http://katinasharp.blogspot.com/2008/07/now-i-lay-me-down-to-sleep.html

    I've also taken your lead and decided to try babywearing. My son (5 months old) LOVES it. I don't know why no one told me how great this was with my first 2 kids! I feel like I missed out! Thank you. -Katina

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  22. I love how you say that you didn't even notice how "normal" you'd become! Your prayers were answered in His time!

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  23. For someone who's so not in normal right now (although it doesn't show on my blog) that was a lovely reminder that normal does come back--eventually. And when it does I plan to hug it kiss it and pray that it sticks around for a looooong time. I'm glad you're able to embrace normal. I suppose that's what hardship is for--to help you appreciate the mundane.

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  24. yeah. So into normal lately myself. Great post, love.

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  25. Hope that normal stays with you Steph and that you continue to savour it. You and your family certainly deserve it.

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  26. Something about this post really got me deep down today. I'm so thankful you have normal!

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  27. Normal is definitely good, and thank you so much for the reminder that when life may seem normal and mundane...that's a good thing!

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  28. Normal does not equal boring.

    Something I have to remember too, and it's good to realize it before it passes by and you "miss out". Even in "normalcy", God is growing us and teaching us.

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  29. AMEN! Sometimes you just don't know how good you have it.
    There are times I'm jogging along outside feeling like crap, wanting to stop, give up. Then I see a mom walking down the sidewalk with her little boy in a wheelchair. Or I see an older gentleman sitting on his porch with no legs. Or a little old woman sitting alone on a park bench.
    Little things that are really an answer to my prayers to remember exactly how good I've got it.
    And I keep running.
    Thank heavens for normal.

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  30. You're right -- there's really something to be said about normal.

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  31. Exactly right; it's funny how often, when we achieve what we had prayed and hoped for, we still want more or feel discontent. I had some of that last week with wanting another child, forgetting that my little girl is the one I prayed for and wanted for years. God gave her to me and that blessing is perfectly enough.

    Thank you for a great perspective.

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  32. This is a great post, and a great reminder to slow down and enjoy the down times. Life is about to speed up for many of us. school starts soon, people are having babies, etc.

    Enjoy your normal, lovely life!

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  33. Normal seems to settle in while you are not paying attention. Things are hard and then one day you realize that they aren't anymore. And then about the time you notice, normal changes again.

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  34. Truly great perspective. But, give yourself the luxury of being bored and even a tad disgruntled with the normal every once in a while. That means you really have achieved it for now.

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  35. I've read some of your posts back, just stumbled upon your blog recently - Your story is so inspiring and hope-giving! Thanks for sharing, and for keeping the blog! God Bless,

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  36. Another great post, Steph. Forgive me for not commenting more often. I'm reading it daily but not always commenting (obviously!). : ) I love your honesty and appreciate your thoughts.

    Blessings,
    Happi

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  37. Step I am so glad that the place you are in brings you so much peace...I wish that normal will stick around for you for a long time :)

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  38. "Done with my whole heart." Thanks for the reminder.

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  39. We have a saying in education: "Normal is what you live with." I hope your "normal" stays boring and dull for a long, long time!

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  40. I can relate. I remember laying in the hospital with my blood clot and hematoma, longing for normal. I hadn't seen Emma for days and I couldn't walk or even pee by myself. Every day, something else went wrong.

    I dreamed of a normal day. A trip to Target to be exact. I prayed for it. A LOT.

    It was only 11 days -- nothing compared to what you went thru with Noah -- but they were long days and I quickly appreciated the day-to-day stuff and the little blessings I failed to notice.

    Sometimes it's hard to feel God in normal, but of course, He's there. We just need to remember to be content. That's true joy after all!

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  41. I'm hoping for my normal to come back soon. Thanks for the reminder. :)

    I know how hard it is with food allergies. My youngest who's also named Greyson( I rarely mention his name) has a rare food allergy disorder and dealing with it everyday has become our normal.

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  42. Steph...we havent got our normal yet!!! Still waiting after 4.5 yrs. But we are in a better place thanks to the diet and you telling us about it. Praying that we can still get to where you are and enjoy normal too :) xxx

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  43. Yes, I have had these exact same thoughts before-- when my son was just trying to learn to eat and was dependent on a trach to breathe, I kept thinking, "If we could just have a normal life." And now, sometimes as he's running past me, breathing just fine with no help, or begging me for a snack yet again, I find myself slipping into the thought life of "Woe is me" and then I get that gentle reminder-- "This is exactly what you prayed for." Normal is good.

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  44. I lived the first year and a half of my Baby's life in just constant terror, and it's surprising how that's just gone now - now life is "normal" again. And yes, I'd like it to stay that way, thank you.

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  45. This is a beautiful post and I commend you for the insight you have gained in these tough times in your life. You are absolutely correct--enjoy the time we have right now, because you never know when it will change.

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