Who am I, that I think I have something to offer to the world of blogging, that anyone would be interested in what I have to say, what I do, or what thoughts I think? I’m the definition of average. I’m the lady you just walked by in the bakery, the one trying not to drool on the chocolate chip cookies, the cookies someone else will be buying because I am dieting. Again. I’m the lady pumping gas into the vehicle in front of you, the one muttering “faster, faster” because I need to be somewhere else five minutes ago. I’m the lady thinking about what to fix for a dinner-for-one but knowing it’ll just be cheese and crackers. Again. I’m the lady you call if you need a funeral casserole, or cupcakes for a party, or a carpool driver, or a concession stand worker. I’m the lady you see picking up garbage along the road when I take my dogs for a walk, and I’m the lady washing dishes at the community potlucks. Again. I’m the daughter, wife, mother, sister, aunt, & friend hiding in the background of all of your lives. I am pretty much invisible, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. It’s so much easier to live a few steps beyond normal when nobody is watching.
If you notice me at all, you would have no clue that I have a tattoo, one gotten long before tattoos were fashionable. A tattoo inked forever into the top of my right thigh when I ran away from home at the age of 35. You wouldn’t know that I can pop a wheelie on a dirt bike or that, once upon a time, I owned my own Harley. Pearl was her name and she was a sweet, sweet ride. You wouldn’t know that I love to travel but that I get claustrophobic in an airplane, or that I prefer skydiving to scuba diving, raw oysters to smoked salmon, or root beer to bottled wine. You wouldn’t know that I read my Bible daily but I struggle with the whole concept of not saying something unless it is nice. You wouldn’t know that my oldest friendship has lasted 60 years and is still going strong. There is no way you could know that when I walk into a department store, the circus peanuts start singing a siren song that is irresistible to me or that, after purchasing and eating half a bag, I feel like barfing and I swear that they will never ride in my buggy again. One of my proudest moments was when I stopped at a gas station on the way home just to throw away the leftovers of a circus peanut binge. You can’t possibly know that I seriously considered going back to dig them out of the trash.
I remember reading somewhere that most people live in a rut that just gets deeper with the years, that they never see anything outside of that rut. Finally, the walls fall in and their life is over. It was so descriptive of my life at the time that it depressed me. I was at a place where I hated my job and I wasn’t all that fond of my family, either. Most of all, I was unhappy with myself for allowing my life to become so routine, so bound by the need to appear “normal”. Stagnation, of the green, slimy variety, was killing me faster than my circus peanut fetish, and I decided that living in a rut just really wasn’t my thing. For the last thirteen years, I have actively chosen to heave myself out of my rut. I’ve made a conscious effort to try new things and go new places. Now, I’d like to take all of you with me as I continue to attempt living just a few steps beyond normal.