Thoughtsgiving Day Six~Parting Ways with the Norm

***NOTE*** Apologies for being so late with my last two posts….wordpress did not publish them as I had planned! (ACK!) So, Thanksgiving day for me is tomorrow,and the giveaway. I hope you understand!!

Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The trouble-makers. The round heads in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status-quo. You can quote them. Disagree with them. Glorify, or vilify them. But the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world Are the ones who do.   ~Apple

Well, it isn’t easy being green, I bet. It also isn’t easy being a rare bird, I have discovered, but it makes me feel fantastic, unique, and satisfies my soul. I searched and searched for the perfect song, but the choice I almost used (Creep by Radiohead), just was too melancholy. Being different is hard sometimes, yes, but it is something I celebrate (and enjoy) nearly every day.

My daughter Haley was walking out of a Red Lobster last spring, and was stopped at least 4 times by elderly women, who all weighed in on her “beautiful pink hair.”  I smiled broader each time, and felt pride when a few said “I wish I had the guts to do that.” Like me, Haley expresses herself through her clothing, hair style, music, and art choices. It’s really not easy to do that, when your expression skews quite far from the norm, however. I do think that it’s pretty important to have a few people like us in the world, however, because……I think we give folks things to think about. When you challenge the norm, life gets scary for some, but it pulls others out of their box, even for just a few seconds; and I think that’s important.

Growing up, I lived in a suburb of Kansas City. While it wasn’t a huge bustling metropolis, it was more “city” oriented. When I moved to a small town after marrying my husband, it was such a culture shock to me, I felt so crazy out of my element. I was used to just blending into the large number of people around me. Things I see as every day,  like taking a walk while wearing Birkenstocks, a do rag, and my baby in a backpack……well, that is shocking to some (many) small town folks. So, the other day, while I was sitting in the local burger joint, waiting on my carry out order, I had a lady ask me “Um………what’s up with your blue hair? (Now, my hair is NOT all blue, there are a few small, faded streaks up front).  She then proceeded to tell me it “just didn’t work.” haha. I smiled and hoped my food was close to finished. 😉 But really, just those small blue streaks in my hair have prompted at least 10 people to ask “oh, did that not come out after Halloween?” Sheesh.

I parted ways with the norm, when I was 14. It wasn’t a good time in my life. I was bullied so much, I was miserable. I literally had a group of girls that would block the hall, and then mercilessly make fun of me, tell me I was ugly, all kinds of things. Another group of girls threatened to kill me. I tried to fit in, with all the right clothes, hair, shoes. No matter how I tried to fit in, it just didn’t work. One day, during an assembly, the ring leader of the girls that threatened me sat behind me. At some point, when the lights were out, she kicked me really hard in the back of the head. It was as if something inside me snapped…..and I realized things would have to change, if I wanted to take control of the situation, and to stop being victimized. So, I went home that night, and gave myself a makeover. I deliberately started to dress, do my hair and makeup in a way that made me look scary, older, tough, and fearless. It was a costume I could put on everyday, and be something else. And, it worked. The “costume” gave me the strength to stand up for myself, and every night, I’d come home and put on comfortable clothes. It was a trade off.

As I grew older, I didn’t need the “costume” any more. But, because I no longer had the need to fit in with my mode of dress, I could be…….me. The liberation was awesome. I did fun things that were then trend setting (don’t think I was cool, I’m not, and wasn’t), fun, and different, and it gave me confidence. Even now, at 37 years old, and a mom of 3 daughters, I have no desire to just look like a mom. I find myself in the way that I step out of the norm, in a world that is very momcentric and mundane.

One day, I hope as an old woman, to walk past kids doing “different” things, like dying their hair bright pink, or cutting it with giant hearts in it or something (I mean, it will be a ways off); and feel no pangs of regret. I hope I’m a brave, eccentric old woman, but if I’m not, I’ll know I showed my inner colors on the outside while I was young.

Going in my book today, will be this digi page, with a little “dressing up.” I wanted a way to put all the love I have in my own deviation from the norm, and who I am, despite my many self doubts, big downfalls, and struggles… on the page…….and this was the best way to do it. 🙂

I’ll show this page in the book at the end of the week. 🙂
Blessings to you all, and I’ll see you tomorrow with my giveaway!!


2 Comments on “Thoughtsgiving Day Six~Parting Ways with the Norm”

  1. Scarlett says:

    Aww man Amy, the more I read – and I have to back track some posts – the more I feel we were really meant to be connected via this series. I am really inspired and while my Thoughtsgiving is going to be behind I’m going to do this and I hope you won’t mind that I follow your prompts and tell my story through them. You are an amazing woman and I’m glad you’re you. Its funny how all those bumps and potholes through life make us the great women we are today! Sending you a free hug. 😉

  2. ava g says:

    really that was not a good school life, really it was not that long ago…
    ava g

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