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Normality


Picture taken at Carlingford Lough, County Louth,  Ireland. 

'Oh you don't do that? You're missing out'. 

So many conversations I've had lately have included the above line. This growing up business is absolutely no joke. It was easier when you were younger - there was at least some form of standardised line of what people were doing - your GCSE's or A Levels or uni. Post uni is when the panic seems to really set in. I've looked around me in the past year - people older than me, people the same age as me and people younger than me are having babies, getting engaged or married and buying houses. At 24, I feel I'm just about ready to buy a house but I'm not sure about the rest of the things but I could wake up tomorrow and just feel ready.

What is it about our society that makes us feel so pressurised and abnormal? What's normal for one person might be your idea of a nightmare (*see above... my personal anxiety of big weddings with 200 guests and pushing a baby out of my hoo ha etc*). I have friends who think I'm crazy for wanting to get a mortgage rather than living rent free with my mum until the right man comes along. I am sick of being made to feel like my normal is not societies idea of normal. Normal is whatever you want it to be - whether that means being single, married or other. I think as I've become older the pressure feels more evident. I'm such a strong willed person but even I have wondered over the past few months, "Is there something wrong with me?".

After going to dinner with one of my best friends last week, we both launched into a topic that all of our friends seem to discussing at the moment. The topic subject doesn't particularly matter but it was something that both of us as 24 year old women felt uncomfortable with. I breathed such a sigh of relief when my friend said "I really don't get what the fuss about it all!" - finally someone I agreed with! Like me, her feeling of abnormality was coming from a feeling of missing out, even if you didn't agree with what was going on!

I've really mulled this topic over for the past week as I'm not a conformer. I will never decide to run with the crowd so I started to scare myself that I seemed to want to question my individuality and my own "normality". I came to the conclusion that normal is whatever you want it to be. Those little doubting feelings are just often gut feelings reminding you that, yes, you are different and thank goodness. Wouldn't life be very boring if we were all the same? Embrace being different and your own normality - not societies norms.