What does normal mean to you?


Abby Wacks

By Abby Wacks, Contributing Writer

I asked my entire fifth-period class what normal means to each of them, and they responded with answers such as “football players,” “cheerleaders,” “rich kids,” “average,” “no such thing,” etc.

We use the word normal to describe people, the way they look, act, walk, talk, breathe. We sometimes use this word to bring people down with judgment.

I continued to ask others their opinion on the topic of normal because I do not think normal should have a standard meaning. Everyone thinks differently when we hear the word normal. Normal has a different definition for each of us. No one I spoke with said the same thing in regard to the word “normal.” That is what makes all of us special — we think differently, look different, dress differently, talk differently. We are all unique.

Everyone had to take a minute when I asked about the word normal and what it means. Apparently, based on my micro research, the average person does not often ponder the word. We may occasionally go out of town and see something out of the ordinary, just someone or something that we do not see every day and may think to ourselves, “well that’s not normal.” Although that is normal, just not for us. We may not view it as normal because we do not do those things or act that way or dress that way. I believe normal is just something most everyone wants to be because we seek acceptance. We do not know how or what perfect is, and it is impossible to achieve. We were made to make mistakes; we were made to be different. No one in this world is 100 percent perfect or the same. Being different is what makes us each unique.

Most individuals strive be normal, to fit in. Most humans have this need to fit into a certain criteria. Most people have a desire to be liked. Most want to be what society expects them to be. Females view social media and often expect to look like these photo-shopped models to fit into the ideal set by companies like Aeropostale, American Eagle and Victoria’s Secret. There is pressure to look for a certain way to be accepted as normal, which is unfair or even damaging. We need to promote the idea that you do not have to be a size 0 to be beautiful. You do not have to have blonde hair and blue eyes to be gorgeous. You do not have to wear make-up to be pretty. Each person is wonderfully and perfectly made. You should not feel the need to change, but alas we do. Normal should be whatever you want it to be, without judgment.

The idea we have of normal and what I think normal should be are two completely different things. Being normal means “no serious or physical or mental health problems. Normal people have standard behavior,” according to Google. Being normal on paper, online, in person, everywhere is important to most people because the majority of people want to experience acceptance.

I think normal should be whatever you want it to be — whoever you are is normal. Everyone should possess their own unique, imperfect, amazing traits. Everyone is normal in their own way. Normal should not be a definition or a standard we must live up to. I think we should have our own idea of how we should be, and people should embrace differences.