I’m the ordinary around the extraordinary

I’m surrounded by talented people – people who are musical, people who can act, people who are scientists, people who are artistic and creative, people who can teach, people who are amazing atΒ maths, people who can speak different languages and so much more.

I’m not any of these things.

I spent my 20’s trying to find my ‘thing’. As an example for ages I was convinced I could sing. I used to get home from the pub put a CD on and sing it over and over again in the hope that one day it would just click and suddenly I wouldn’t be ordinary any more. I cannot even begin to express how annoying that must have been to everyone around me and I will use this opportunity to apologise to anyone who had to put up with me wailing along to CD’s in the kitchen.

I go into everything I do thinking that this is it and I’m going to finally find my hidden talent – the thing that sets me apart from everyone else and gives me a place. It was only last year that I realised how much this kind of thinking is related to my self worth and how I see myself. I’ve managed to persuade myself that I’m only worth something I’ve got something I can say I’m good at but I just don’t have anything.

I’m average height although above average weight, I’ve got nondescript brown hair and brown eyes with no special features that make me memorable. I can hold a note but I can’t sing. I can’t speak different languages, I can hold my own in political or literary conversations but I’m averagely intelligent. I can swim, run, cycle and walk but no better or worse than the average person. Even this blog is one amongst millions written by other mums and has average content.

I’m decidedly average and completely ordinary in every way. Every single way.

The big thing for me is coming to terms with the fact that that is ok.

All of this is ok.

Just because I’m not extraordinary doesn’t mean that ordinary is bad. Extraordinary people need us ‘normos’ around them so they can meet their goals and ambitions – I might not be able to write a dissertation but people can talk to me about it when they are frustrated about writing theirs. I might not be able to write a book but I know I’d support any one of my friends who decided they wanted to.

Being ordinary and without talent is an ok thing to be.

This isn’t meant as a pity party or any kind of fishing for compliments because it really is ok to be average. I’ll never be a star or a master in any field but I will support anyone who has a ‘thing’ they excel at – because that’s what extraordinarily ordinary people do.


4 thoughts on “I’m the ordinary around the extraordinary

  1. Marie Nayaka says:

    “We are all ordinary. We are all boring. We are all spectacular. We are all shy. We are all bold. We are all heroes. We are all helpless. It just depends on the day.” ~ Brad Meltzer

    I love this post, Jen. Thank you for writing it. I feel the same, especially since having children. Is it just us two that think like this? I suspect not πŸ™‚

  2. Jessica says:

    Recently, in a work training session we all had to say something about ourselves in secret and guess which one related to which person. It was an exercise in first impressions and reading people. I was last to write my ‘hidden talent’ ‘my something special/different/spectacular(!)’. I was panicked and flustered and annoyed at myself, for in the end I lied. I made something up. Next time I will go with something true and normal and be proud. Great article x

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