Defining Normal

“I can’t wait for things to get back to Normal”

“We are still adjusting to the new normal”

“This is certainly not Normal”

I don’t know how many times I have heard the above lines (or something similar) in just the past week. Every time I come across any statement with the word Normal in it, I just start wondering what exactly is being discussed.

The way the word Normal is used in most sentences, it appears to refer to familiarity. It’s neither good or bad. It’s just what we are used to.

So the resistance against anything that is deemed not-normal seems futile. What is not familiar to us may be familiar to someone else. We may get familiar to it ourselves eventually but it does not automatically make it better.

This brings me to another persistent desire to label everything as good or bad. We don’t even wait to let the moment finish before jumping to conclusions if it was good or bad. Can everything be actually labelled as good or bad? I know for somethings it is pretty much black and white. But there are things where it is a little trickier to put labels.

We use big words like – Normal or Acceptable when we don’t even spend time to understand it ourselves.

Right now, people are saying that things are not normal. Well, when were things normal? People are waiting for things to go back to normal. Go back to what exactly?

Change is perhaps the only constant in life. Things will keep changing. Sometimes we will like the change sometimes we won’t. Labelling the change as good or bad is futile. Change is change. If something changes today it may again change tomorrow. And there is nothing called normal. We just get used to somethings. As soon as we get used to somethings, it becomes the new normal for us.

Thing is, we live in the present moment. Right now. Right in this particular breath. Maybe that’s why there is so much focus on the breath in meditation. We live in the present. So if we are desperate to look for a definition of Normal, then we need to start looking in the present.

The present moment is Normal. The present moment for me as my fingers move on my keyboard is normal for me. Next moment when I post this then that will be normal. Tomorrow I might not write the entire day and end up staying in bed scrolling through my phone aimlessly. Tomorrow that will be my normal.

I have no control over what happened yesterday and I have no control over what is going to happen tomorrow. I may learn my lesson from the past and make plans for the future. But Today is where I can do something. Today is where I can create my current normal.

This is how I define normal.

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