Tag Archives: new normal

Feeling left behind

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It’s a feeling I’ve had on and off over the years. As have you, and him, and her. And probably my brother, and mom, maybe one of my good friends. Hell, maybe all of them. But, it’s not something openly discussed. Mental health and sexuality are now diagnosed, talked about, named and acknowledged, but feeling “less than” is something still in the closet, lurking behind closed doors, a Voldemort yet to be named.

Well, I’m sure we’ve all felt it. But, what do you do when you feel like others have moved on. And not always in a good way or bad way, but just in a different way? I’ve seen people move out of the city, buy houses, get married, have kids and in all orders imaginable and irreversible. Now, I’m not saying that everything works out for the best, some of those people move back or never even made it out in the first place, some are divorced, some lose their job, some lose their will, but what happens when you feel like you are standing still. I’ve got my cat, my plants, my goals to lose weight, but nothing else is on the horizon. Life just….is.

The funny thing is that is how I always wanted life to be. I didn’t want a neverending to do list of benchmarks and milestones, I just wanted to be okay in the everyday, in the mundane and in the now. And for the most part I am…but get a little case of the “wait for meeees” when my Instagram is littered with new dogs and babies, strollers and renos, wedding rings and honeymoons. There is nothing wrong with my life, but I feel a little left behind, not invited to the old gatherings, not cool enough for the new mom’s cool kids group, too old to party, too young to afternoon tea.

What to do? Do I wallow in my self-pity and think about all the friends I used to spend time with, do I fast-track my life plan to fit into my peers, do I think about all the times I tried to lead that pack with trips and adventures, new cities, new risks, new dates and new friends? I guess none of the above, because no amount of thinking, wishing, envying, or worrying is going to change the outcome. Tomorrow is what it will be and their plans are theirs, not mine. I can only hope that the world I fit into is the world that doesn’t forget to let me fit in. And the world that does forget, well I guess it’s not my world anymore.

“Normality is a paved road. It’s comfortable to walk, but no flowers grow on it.” – Vincent Van Gogh

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Life is the Messy Bits

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redhead family

This past weekend was Family Day weekend.  That actually makes no sense, as Family Day is a day and I just referenced it as a weekend…however, we had the Monday off as it was Family Day.  In essence, this created a long weekend.  Phew, thank god I clarified that.

I, for one, actually spent the entire weekend with my actual family.  The whole lot of them.  A night with my brother, his kids, my other brother and his common-law lady, both their dogs and two cats.  I then proceeded to drive another 2 hours to visit my parents and third brother’s homes.  I saw my mom, my dad, my brother’s new wife, his kids, his step-kids, his ex-wife, her boyfriend, three dogs and even my new sister-in-law’s father and step-mother. Finally, I finished the night off texting with good friends and cuddling with my cats.

Family is a big, messy, complication nowadays.  There is rarely such a thing as the nuclear family and there are few expectations of happily ever after.  Hell, I have friends who only went to see other friends and probably count them closer to family then they do their own siblings.  Like Modern Family, there is no one way to have a family now.  Like The New Normal, there is no normal anymore.

I know for me – well, my sister-in-law, my common-law sister-in-law, my new sister-in-law and even my ex-sister-in-law are all important people in my life.  The ex is the closest thing that I’ve ever had to a sister and in a weird way her boyfriend is like my brother-in-law.  And the new additions to my brother’s family?  Well, those would now be my niece and nephew.

There is no wrong way to have a family.  At least not in my books.  So, go out and appreciate yours, whatever version that may be.  Don’t feel guilty for enjoying time with them and don’t feel guilty for not enjoying time with them…just remember there is no real expectation anymore and you shouldn’t feel bad for who you love…or are forced to tolerate.

So, embarassingly enough, like Erma Bombeck says,  “I come from a family where gravy is considered a beverage.”

The Ginga Ninja

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