Well, I recently saw the latest article circulating reminding me that I am not “normal.” It was a very thorough account of what a normal house with children looks like. The woman is a mother to 3 boys under the age of 5 and she lists all the aspects of her home that are clearly the norm and ensures that anyone who does not fall in that list is lying, trying to guilt other mothers or, my personal favorite, living a “clinical delusion” for having different standards for their homes.
These types of articles are becoming all too familiar. The ones that discuss what a “real” woman’s body looks like and how “normal” mothers behave. Complete lists pointing to what each one of us supposedly feels or exhibits and if we claim otherwise, we are certainly lying or living in some fantastical dream.
Quite frankly, these articles are getting old. And I have finally reached my breaking point where I have decided to speak out.
I am a 5 foot 10 inch woman who wears a size 10. My house is clean and clutter-free on a regular basis and my beige carpets are stain-free despite having 4 children under the age of 6. I bake my own bread and make all our meals from scratch. And I rock my lifestyle proudly and unapologetically.
I am real. I am normal. I am a human woman and mother.
If you are 5 foot 3 and wear a size 20, have a continuously cluttered home, hate dusting, and eat fast food and boxed dinners regularly, you too are real, normal and human and should be rocking your lifestyle proudly and unapologetically.
We all should be because we are all real. We are just all different. And there is nothing wrong with that.
I understand that societal norms covet being “thin” and being a Suzie Homemaker. I get the need to speak out against negativity that is spoken about not looking like a magazine model or having a Martha Stewart kitchen. I understand and whole-heartedly respect those who are proud of who they are despite what the world says about them.
But calling those magazine models and Martha homes abnormal, unhealthy, ridiculous or unrealistic is not the way to get society to where it should be.
It would be like ending racism against African Americans by turning hate on Caucasians. Or standing up for homosexuality by stating heterosexuality is sinful or an abomination.
Shaming those who are not like you in order to lift yourself up will get you no where on your stance against shaming.
I fully support writing articles that help other women, other mothers, other people see that they are not alone. I embrace it completely and am beyond grateful to many out there who have written their truths and helped me realize that I am not alone in my struggles. But to do so by attacking, belittling or looking down on others is just not right. Calling these women abnormal and unreal, or going so far as to call them clinically delusional does not make you the winner in life.
There is no winner. There is no “normal.” We are all different personalities with different priorities. Different successes and different struggles.
So by all means, share your stories and lift up those who relate to what you write, but stop tearing down others in your attempt to “normalize” what you wish.
We are all normal. We are all real. We are all human.