• Nina Holmes

Don’t Let Traditional Define Untraditional

Since reaching middle age, I’ve learned the things I accepted as truth were not my truth at all. It’s some truth designed by society. See, traditional ways seem to be the norm, while untraditional is abnormal. Abnormal defines my way of life for some time as the untraditional is my normal and I love it. Here, I’m addressing the Schizophrenia diagnosis I received years ago. I thought it was normal to hallucinate or have delusions. We Black children have vivid imaginations.

I is, and I mean I is, fairly lucky for controlling it and being able to live a good life for my kids. It’s a part of my normal day-to-day, and my husband is great support. I know he loves me given all the buggy sh** I’ve done. But, the point is some would view our relationship as abnormal because I do prefer to stay home and I am not in attendance at most events my husband attends. My “affliction” is no secret. Some of his colleagues look upon this negatively, but it works for us. I make sure I do my part to always stay aware by attending a support group with those similar. We are nontraditional to others but very normal in that setting.



The point is to not look upon people as abnormal because they don’t fit a certain mold designed by society or as uptight Christians who can’t even live by their plan. I’ve had the pleasure of meeting some great people while attending a support group. There are two people that come to mind that have a nontraditional relationship that screams abnormality to people. They have known, protected, and been a place of solace for each other for years without being together in the classical sense. Not all people need to be romantic. They are extremely close which causes insecurity for any people they meet. They are both abnormal, but they have had such difficulty because of trying to be normal or what people expect, without each other. A relationship like that gives “normal people” jealousy and insecurity but they are the most normal abnormal people. I’ve also met a bipolar man that spends his free time collecting bottlecaps and building structures with them like model homes and castles. We speak about the most incredible things. He makes sense to those that can relate but not to those unwilling to hear.


I’ve learned that I love solitude away from those who view me as abnormal because my abnormal is normal. Their normal is like being in the Matrix and that’s a pass. I choose to find value in those like me because we understand the struggle. The struggle is the loss of all family and friends because they can’t understand the struggle, their selfish needs, or being unable to hold a job because of going off medication. I win because I sought help, take medications, and commit to a group to understand the disorder and how my mind functions. Nontraditional is not always a negative concept. The way you use it can be though--


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