Rob, thanks for your comment!
I understand you dislike the word “disorder” in its sense of upset of health; ailment. You probably thought I am using the term incorrectly, trying to describe in a dramatic way our desire to travel. Or maybe you accept such a condition as normal, as you yourself are a traveller! But I assure you, we truly were diagnosed by a psychiatrist with Dromomania and it is a mental disorder.
“Dromomania-also travelling fugue, is an uncontrollable psychological urge to wander. People with this condition spontaneously depart from their routine, travel long distances and take up different identities and occupations. Months may pass before they return to their former identities. The term comes from the Greek: dromos (running) and mania (insanity)
More generally, the term is sometimes used to describe people who have a strong emotional or even physical need to be constantly traveling and experiencing new places, often at the expense of their normal family, work, and social lives.”
-quote from Wikipedia
Let me explain some more.
In my previous post About Us I used the term “disorder” sarcastically in order to describe our constant desire to travel which has altered our lives many times already.
“The one thing the four of us have in common is a disorder. Many years ago, when Ivo and I were both eighteen, we would hitch-hike, bike, hike, take a bus or a train or even a plane (depending on our budget) in order to go to a place we have never been yet, or to escape from a place we didn’t want to be in any more. While hitch-hiking, we’ve been picked up by many strange transportations besides cars, among which: a donkey wagon, motorcycles, a garbage truck, and a convoy of mules led by gipsies in the Bulgarian mountains. In 1995, in a hostel somewhere in Slovakia, an ex-psychiatrist finally diagnosed us with Dromomania: a maniacal impulse for travelling, and we’ve been chronically and proudly sick ever since. The kids got this condition too or were probably born with it, and I think it might be contagious, as many of our friends, after spending time with us, got it as well.”
I didn’t want to offend nobody using the word “disorder”, not even ourselves. I think I used it accurately.
I have to admit, I am fascinated by the term and all its definitions, now that I think of it, especially the fourth one: a deviation from the normal system or order.
1. a lack of order; disarray; a state of confusion
2. (Law) a disturbance of public order or peace
3. (Medicine) an upset of health; ailment
4. a deviation from the normal system or order
I embrace disorder!
The normal scare me.
1. Conforming with, adhering to, or constituting a norm, standard, pattern, level, or type; typical:
2. The usual or expected state, form, amount, or degree.
a. Correspondence to a norm.
b. An average.
Anyway, I believe that there is no such thing as “normal”. We all at one time or another feel different, act different, are different; with some sort of a disorder.
Today: a hyperactive kid is immediately diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder.
Today: we are being sold modified foods, fast foods, horrible foods, and immediately diagnosed with Eating Disorders.
Today: we are being subjects of immense stress: the gas prices rise uncontrollably; we lose our jobs for no reason; a crazy guy kills twenty kids in a school, and soon enough we are taking pills for Acute Stress Disorder or Anxiety Disorder.
Today: our kids live in a virtual world of videogames: they have Adolescent Antisocial Disorder.
(I think, normality is urban legend.It is also a fluid term that may change its definition according to historical, geographical, or social context. What is normal in Africa may not be normal in Asia. What was normal in medieval times may not be normal today. People once accepted slavery as normal. People today accept as normal such things like inflation and taxation in a corrupt system (isn’t that slavery again?), hanging in traffics for hours each day, or working jobs they hate in order to pay for things they don’t need.)
So, we have a disorder. We have many disorders. So be it!
Embrace your disorders and live with them, it’s normal!