I always desired to be normal and fit in. I struggled with wanting to fit in socially starting in 7th grade but the desire to be “normal” came in 10th grade when I started to change my diet. When I started my sophomore year of high school I had only been off of gluten, dairy, soy, sugar, and corn for about a month and none of my friends really knew why. I stuck out and my life was suddenly dramatically different than theirs.
A mentor of mine had the unfortunate pleasure of listening to me say many, many times that all I wanted was to be normal and eat like everyone else and not have to be concerned about my health. She asked me what being normal meant to me. My response was that being normal meant that I didn’t stand out. She kind of smiled and then said, “Normal people live normal lives and you have no desire to have an ordinary life”.
This has stuck with me for the past year now and has positively influenced my view of my health issues. All of these problems and struggles that have come with them have happened for a reason and I am growing from it. I have learned lessons and developed characteristics that I don’t know if I would have without my health issues and food restrictions.
I don’t know about you but I have no desire to live a normal life. I don’t want to only be going through the motions and not be doing something with my life. That has no appeal to me. I want to travel, care for others, and change the world! I want to stand out and be extraordinary! If I don’t want a normal life then why do I want to be normal? It doesn’t make sense!
My poor health would prevent me from doing all those things. My health would be part of what makes me live an ordinary life. So, how do I change that? I change my health. I change my diet. I stick out and live differently so I don’t have to live a normal life.
Wanting to be normal isn’t wrong; it’s pretty natural actually to want to fit in. That desire doesn’t go away though until you make it, until your desire for something else is bigger then your desire to be normal. Do you want to be normal? Do you want to live a normal life? If not, what is it that you want? Focus on that consistently and you will find your desire to not stand out and be normal slowly going away making this journey easier.
You can learn more about my journey by reading my book, “A Teenager’s Perspective on Food Restrictions: A Practical Guide to Keep from Going Crazy”. Find out more about the book here or go ahead and purchase for only $1.99 here!