A New Normal

Mom is home. Saturday Dad and I packed up Mom’s stuff from the rehab center and brought her home. This is good. I am not saying it isn’t. But it was also strange for me. Strange because of expectations I placed upon this event. The act of going home. All day Saturday I was having trouble shaking the feeling that I secretly wanted everything to immediately return to normal when we pulled into the garage. We’d all hop out of the car, walk in the house and things would return to normal.

Normal though is a funny word. I started thinking, what is my normal now? The old normal that I know is never returning. It is the one before Mom had MS. That is a normal I have grieved for and have accepted in a small way. I feel I accept it more and more every year. That normal is not coming back.

But the normal I am referring to now, I can’t help asking myself what is it?  The only answer I can come up with is before the relapse, but things weren’t perfect then either. Mom seemed to be declining in her abilities and struggling more over the past few months. So, what is the last date I can envision this normal I keep referring to? I don’t know. So then I struggle with that. Then I begin to feel sad. Then I begin to feel overwhelmed by my thoughts. Then I wish things would return to normal. Then the cycle continues.

I know the word “normal” is very loaded. Everyone has their own vision of normal. But right now I can’t even come up with the normal I am grieving or the normal that exists. Is that bad? Or is that part of living day to day? Reminding yourself there is no normal. Training my mind that each day is a new normal. The thought of that is kind of exhausting to me. But I guess that is part of living in the moment. Taking life one day at a time. You don’t look forward to a future normal. You don’t look back to your old normal. You live in today’s normal. Holding on to the good moments. Letting go of the bad moments. Trying to find a new normal.

Do you have trouble defining your normal? Do you believe each day may present it’s own new normal? Do you ever grieve for a past that is no more?

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