What is Normal?

As I watched the news this morning, I heard the news anchors saying again and again that what the Midlands community is looking forward to is returning to a sense of normalcy. I nodded my head in agreement at first, but then I realized that for some many families there won’t be a normal to be returned to.

I have already heard stories of people who are planning on moving from the Midlands because quite simply there is nothing left for them here. They have no house and no materials and so they are headed to family and friends’ homes who can support them during this time of rebuilding. Their lives will forever be marked by last week’s events and their normal Midlands lives may never exist again.

For the rest of us who were fortunate enough to maintain minor damages, our coming days and weeks will be filled with a new sort of normal that includes remembering to bring another bottle of water to put by the sink to brush our teeth, debating each day whether we really need to keep that one bathtub filled with water just in case, and including extra time in our commute to detour around closed roads.

As organisms operating in an ecosystem, the return to homeostasis is certainly something we are working towards, and the hope for this return to balance is what makes us get up and continue to work in our community amidst tired muscles and shock. As we work, we secretly know that there won’t be a normal like there was before. We know that we will have to adjust and change. We know that the way we view the world is slowly shifting.

We just hope that change makes us stronger and better neighbors.