Sunday, 24 April 2011

The sliding scale of normality

A couple of weeks ago at church we had a sermon about…

…well I honestly can’t remember the context or even the text used, except it was a long one (text not sermon), but the lasting point that stuck in my head and probably every other member of the congregation was the statement that “churches are full of weirdoes”!

Of course at this point in the sermon everyone looked round at everyone else with a few knowing nods that it is such a true statement.

Each one of us believes we are “normal” but as for the rest of the population …

Churches have a tendancy to attract people who are unique.  Broken people looking for somewhere to belong.  The beauty of the body of Christ is that we are all loved and accepted.  This diversity is good.  Where else would you find such an eclectic mix of people learning to love one another?  That’s how we grow.

A group of us from church met on Friday night for tea, as we usually do.  The grown ups chat and the children play.  It is the time of the week I feel most comfortable.  We started talking about this very topic and came up with the phrase “a sliding scale of normality”.

“That would make a good title for a blog post.” I joked at the time but then set myself the challenge to write it!

I like quirky titles.  I like their uniqueness and how they draw you in making you ponder something from a different perspective.

At the moment I would love to feel normal again – whatever that may feel like!

I don’t want being a “widow” to define who I am.

You may have noticed I’ve changed the “about me” box in the corner and “W” word no longer appears.

“I am a dreamer, a writer, a mother and a child of God.”

There are times when I do feel “normal”. Friday tea, being with friends and just being accepted.  They know who I am and they have shared, in part, the road I have travelled.  I can laugh with them, cry with them and be myself.

To be yourself is to be normal.  To be the person God created you to be without pretence.

In January I posted an entry called “Will the real Sarah please step forward”.  It was about feeling lost and not knowing who I was any more.

There are so many facets to who I am.  Like everyone else I have a distinct combination of DNA, experience and environment.

There is a “sliding scale of normality” but it’s not a uniform one size fits all scale!

Since November my normality setting has been seriously knocked off the scale.  FSD – full scale deflection – just some technical term Andrew taught me.

It’s similar to a dial on a radio being tuned to static.  I am trying to adjust it, first flicking the dial one way and then the other.

The signal is sometimes weak and crackly.  Then there are the days when you think you have got it only for the song to stop and you realise you’ve found some foreign station that’s incomprehensible.  The wrong voices – how I wish I could hear the right one! Gradually I’m finding the signal again and retuning. 

I still cry, quite a lot at the moment actually, I still miss Andrew and the life we shared together as a family, I always will, but here’s just one tiny reason why I know I am finding my way back to normal.

I rediscovered something I love to do and you mustn’t tell anyone but… I’ve been singing along loudly to some of my favourite songs on my iPod and dancing round the kitchen daydreaming when no one’s looking!  I think the boys stay out of my way when they hear me sing anyway!

These are the things I do that are essentially “me”, times when I’m wrapped up in my own little world and more importantly times when I am HAPPY!  I just need to find the happy songs and turn up the volume!

There is a spark of a hope as I slide back towards normality.  When I forget the “things I still have to do list”, let go and just “be me” even for a few minutes of static free, crystal clear sound.

I’ve not put any song quotes in for a while so here are some of the words to one of the songs I’ve been singing…just let me turn up the volume…

“dreams aren’t what they used to be
Some things slide by so carelessly
So smile like you mean it”
                                                                                 “Smile like you mean it” by the Killers

Happy Easter! 


  1. Wow! A post at 0:58.....Happy Easter to you too!
    Yes! I remember you sang beautifully in church for some special celebration, cant remember what it was or who you sang with....I think it could have been Lucy? I'm not sure?? You are soooo talented! xxx

  2. No I didn't really post so early! There's something wrong with the time setting on here and I don't know how to alter it - not so talented after all!!! And as for my singing ability - just don't ask the boys for their opinion!