Being normal is about change

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, October 1, 2002

My friend, Scott, called Sunday morning and said he was coming to visit and

he was bringing his friend, Brad along.

&uot;You remember Brad, he was weird and now he’s normal,&uot; said Scott.

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I had to think a second as to why Brad was weird before and I couldn’t

remember. Then I started to wonder what being normal was. What is normal is constantly changing, I decided.

I was sitting with some women recently and they were discussing the videotaped incident of the woman that was beating her child in a parking lot. Several of the women said they paddled their own children when they were out of line.

My own mother kept a paddling stick on top of the refrigerator out of reach of the rest of us, but handy for her to grab. This was considered normal behavior to have a spanking stick available for many parents. The exception when I was growing up was hearing about parents that never hit their children.

But the mother on the video did not just paddle her daughter; she hit her with a closed fist. I couldn’t bear watching the television and seeing the mother beating her little daughter. I walked out of the room every time it came on the television.

Unfortunately the child is still being punished because she was taken away from her mother. I do hope the mother and daughter reunite and through the court system and intervention available, the mother will get guidance on how to better control her anger. This mother should have come forward immediately after the incident, but instead she went into hiding and dyed her hair. It makes one wonder if she has something else to hide. I do feel there is more to this story with the returning of the store items, the beating, and the hiding of the mother.

What once was considered normal, hitting children; I am glad that it is not correct to do anymore. There should be no secrets with children; parents that have something to hide are usually the ones that take their frustrations out on their children. I think the child that was beat must have said some innocent remark that infuriated the mother. I bet that the mother and daughter are very similar in their personalities. I hope that the mother will never beat any of her children again. I do think that the young daughter will never ever beat her own children, as this incident will have left a deep impression on her.

As for Brad, he was on a raw food diet and looked great. He had lost 80 pounds and he ate raw soybeans from the field and raw green beans from my garden. Scott said he was normal now because he had lost so much weight.

Like I said before, what is normal is constantly changing.

Sheila Donnelly can be reached at 434-2233 or by e-mail at