Norm-Gnome: Settled Unsettled

The mythological legend of ‘The Norm’… the Norm-Gnome guards such treasures carefully, burying riddle-seeds to grow and flourish and die and rain more riddle-seeds upon recycled ground to grow and flourish and die and rain, and rain, and rain, and rain… resurfaced emotion disguises the onion layers as unpeelable, uncontrollable, impossible… circles and circles and misshapen spheres escaping, crawling, rushing – drip, drop, drip – heavy slow-fast warm marbles roll down, freeing themselves from the claustrophobia-cage, the sharpened throat-monsters thick and solid…yet the mythological Norm-Gnome floats, interchanging, never quite knowing which kind of ribbon to tie onto the sails of his super-safe boat, never quite knowing whether to travel or return, but always completely sure that the treasure must be guarded carefully and that no matter how many times riddle-seeds may grow and flourish die and rain, grow and flourish die and rain, the true truth-feeling must be honoured no matter which directions the sail-ribbons turn… the Norm-Gnome may be settled in his indecisive ways but the wobbly-waters twist and tumble, unsettling the goblin-seas, sickening unfocused shapes and bothering the bitter buzz, the bitter bitter buzz is bitter – “SAIL AWAY – ROW FASTER! QUICKER!” – “HOW can I be settled just because he’s settled in his unsettledness?!”, exclaims Maible in confused distress… but the goblin stays quiet over loud-emotion air, and the marble-drops rain on – drip, drop, drip – heavy slow-fast warm marbles, freeing themselves from the claustrophobia-cage…

Naming the existence of the Norm-Gnome can be helpful or unhelpful, depending on the delivery and the essence behind it; the Goblin told me that the the Norm-Gnome is a transparent traveller, not a container for the worlds within. I have never tried to claim that this creature is not within me, despite questioning my feelings in relation to his existence or wondering how I must associate myself with it. It is important to feel a connection with some sort of norm, even if the norm isn’t present in the room, for there is always some kind of norm somewhere. It is also important to acknowledge the absence of the norm, to respect inner differences when the Norm-Gnome is at sea. Sometimes we feel the same, sometimes we don’t. Sometimes the shapes are similar or the same but on a different scale or colour-scheme. How do we know? Sometimes we know. We observe, analyse, ask questions. The same shape can be fine to cope with in one person and an extreme struggle in another, and although the coping-ability could be a reflection of the different-shaped-shape-boat it sits in, why is it so hard for some people to accept that perhaps sometimes it could just be a different coloured shape, or a different sized shape, or a different shape altogether? Different shapes within same shapes, isn’t that what this all is? Is it not okay to recognise different shapes in a positive light, for what they are, instead of assuming we choose to acknowledge them because we want to deface the shapes to make them more different than they already are? Acknowledging something doesn’t aim to put it on a big stage for the world to applaud at – sometimes it’s important to recognise the shapes so they can be reshuffled and aligned, to allow the shape-creature that holds the shapes to be self and to be free.

Yes, this is a jumbly jumbly jumblement triggered by a particular annoyance-moment of unnecessary concentrated-upset a month or so ago, but I trust that my understanding will be unjumbled in time, through the constant reshaping of jumbly jumbly words. Sometimes, it takes a seemingly tiny thing to trigger a seemingly unstoppable GIANT GROWING EVER-MORPHING thing within my bodymask – but that’s because the tiny thing isn’t always as tiny as it seems. I don’t only go by the words people use – it’s also the essence of the words that are told. Sometimes odd words still hold wonderful essence, sometimes wonderful words still hold harsh-spiky essence – and it’s easy to get confused between the two. Sometimes the essence is welcoming and at other times the essence is silencing – but this works both ways, for agreements and disagreements, hence the mind-confusion… I like discussions; differing opinions help to untangle the contradicting things within my own brain, to expand upon existing thoughts, to gain perspective through other people’s kaleidoscope-eyes. If we all thought the same and only had conversations with people who think the same, then what if we always thought the same, forever, unable to change? It’s thoughts like this that make me grateful for the constant contradictions in my own brain-jelly, for despite the irritating bickering, I’m not sure I’d learn as well… perhaps the duality is good for something after all… (though of course if I could just pause it for even half a day that would be great!)

RollerDino rolls and giggles: ’The Gnorm-Nome, The Gnorm-Nome, I’m friends with the Gnorm-Nome – he looked at me, he smiled at me, he threw away the riddle-seeds-‘ ‘That’s not how you spell Norm-Gnome, Roller-Dino’ snapped Maible insensitively yet not unsensingly. ‘He didn’t THROW AWAY the riddle-seeds, he buried more to grow and flourish, grow and flourish, DIE AND RAIN – and rain, and rain, and rain and rain’ – ‘Grow and flourish into BEAUTIFUL MULTI-GLITTER PETAL-LANDS, and we shall HANG THEM FROM THE CEILING and STICK THEM ON OUR FACES and THROW them up, up into the air-clouds to rain confetti-lands upon us ALL!’, exclaims RollerDino, rolling back, rolling forth, rolling round and round in a spin-cycle of sugarsoap, spinny wheels flicker-flashing colour-splashing in merry puddles. The goblin sighs smilingly, waiting for the sugarsoap to dissolve. The goblin knows that the Norm-Gnome is neither friend nor foe (yet seemingly more friend than foe to the mindcave-creatures) – he is a creature of existence that can be smiled at or with yet is not befriendable, a travelling creature so fickle – and though his perspective is valued, he’s better off floating in the goblin-seas, content in his interchangeable nature, floating in and out of knowings and unknowings, never quite knowing which kind of ribbon to tie onto the sails of his super-safe boat, rewobbling the waters as the sugar-soap spins round and round and round…

There are various washing machine cycles in this brain-jelly and one of them is the ‘Normal Cycle’. Echoes upon echoes upon echoes in varying voices. ‘What is normal, anyway?’ ‘There’s no such thing as normal’ – actually, there is, there is such thing as ‘the norm’ but this is an ever changing thing as is much dependant on the environment that one is in, it isn’t always accurate (further morphened by the complicated half-hidden nature of humans and a lot being hidden unseen within the bodymask) – and not being of the norm doesn’t mean being right or wrong, it just means not being of the norm in that specific environment in that given time – but to say that there’s no such thing feels a bit like I need to close my eyes and pretend I haven’t noticed or analysed any patterns of being. If I was in a room of fifty people who all had red hair and I had blue hair, it wouldn’t be wrong for me to state that ‘having red hair is normal/’usual’/common in this environment’, but it wouldn’t mean that I should aspire to be like the others just because they have red hair, and it also doesn’t mean that I should take a stance that I must make myself stand out as being NOT the norm, or that I am deliberately trying to be not-the-norm – and it also doesn’t mean that twenty or thirty or more of those people secretly or non-secretly also have blue hair or yellow hair or black hair or green hair or no hair and actually dye their hair or wear a wig to make it look like they are of ‘the norm’, to make them feel like they are ‘normal’. It also doesn’t mean I believe all the people in the room are the only people to exist ever. I might later get on a bus with ten people on it, who all have blue hair, yet their hair might be beautiful curls and mine might be a straight, semi-wavy unkempt MESS and then I might get really angry because my hair keeps getting in my face and shave it all off and then later find myself amongst an ocean of multi-coloured wigs wondering what on earth I need to put on my head – before realising I don’t need to make a choice, I could just lie there and let the brain-thoughts either let it grow or not grow and that it DOESN’T ACTUALLY MATTER. It’s impossible to be normal in EVERY environment in comparison to EVERY being/thing, but it’s possible to be normal or not normal in a situation, and both are neutral things. (What’s not neutral is the way people are sometimes treated when they are assumed ‘not-normal’, or the way some people feel when they are assume they are ‘not-normal’ – or even how they feel or are treated when they are assumed to be/assume they are ‘normal’ as some people consciously resist it preferring to differ – and these strong feelings get muddled up with the initial analysis of ‘what is normal’). Words are words and words can have complex translations that are much bigger than the word. Words within Worlds, Worlds within Words. Some days I like hearing the Norm-Gnome’s name more than others, and perhaps the particular day these unjumblings are based on was a day where, for mind-health reasons, I particularly needed his absence to be acknowledged. Let the Norm-Gnome boat sail on, and let him also return.

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