Does normal = good?

I don’t lead a normal life. I’m convinced I’m a wild child who just can’t be normal, and frankly speaking, I don’t want to be normal either. When I was in college, I was the only student from Hong Kong to major in something unless as journalism and political science. When I returned home, I was one of the few real reporters in the business with a “prestigious” American education. When I was working on my master’s, I was the only student so keen on answering any question raised by my instructors whereas everyone else would rather play with their phones.

Instead of trying to blend in the crowd, I don’t mind standing out, for better or for worse. People often think I’m self-absorbed because unlike most people in this city, I speak up; I don’t mind showing off my talent; I don’t fake being humble; I accept praises. Do I think I’m self-absorbed? Not entirely. I love myself more than an average insecure woman would love herself I guess, but I don’t love myself as in I think I’m better than everyone. I just think I’m unique and special.

The problem with being special is that very few people share your experience and worldview. You get misunderstood all the time. Do I mind being misunderstood? Yes and no. I like being liked, so I’d at least try to explain myself if you misunderstand me, but if you refuse to change your mind, then I can do with one more hater.

Being special is a very lonesome thing. People SAY that they get you, that they support you, but very few are actually as bold as you. If you don’t feel that, you probably aren’t that special to begin with. It takes so much faith to continue doing what you do if you are that special. It’s easy to ignore haters or people with malicious intentions. What’s hard to ignore are well-meaning words from people who love you. You know they want the best of you, but they just aren’t you. They can only sympathize. They can’t empathize.

Once in a while, you start doubting yourself. You start wondering if what you’re doing is really worth it. You start wondering how much longer you have to wait before something happens. Your patience starts to wear off. You look at all the normal people around you, and you begin to think maybe they’re doing something right.

At the end of the day, you need to remind yourself how special you are, and how the greatest game changers in history were never “normal”.



About Nicky

Nicky English is a journalist, an educator, a podcaster, a couch potato, a dreamer, and a child at heart. Learning is her passion, so is the English language, which she believes is the tool to unlock the door of knowledge. Born in Hong Kong, she received intensive writing training at The University of Iowa, where she double-majored in journalism and political science. Apart from the Hawkeye State, she’s lived in Chicago and Philadelphia. When she was a guest student at Georgetown University, she fell in love with Washington, D.C. She also has a Master of Arts in Communication. A little side note—she cannot imagine a world without her Mac and iDevices. Like many crazy ones, she hopes to change the world one day at a time.
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