For the last six months or so, I have a friend that has been, sadly, very sick. I believe I have been sharing bits here and there about it. But I can’t share too much out of maintaining a sense of privacy for her and her family. None of us know exactly how her illness will end. But she has been told it is terminal. We are all bracing for the inevitable. It’s been trying times to say the least. It’s a looming sadness. A latent tearfulness that is ready to be activated. She shows a good smile, though. And research does show that a good attitude can be associated with positive health outcomes in such situations.
While, that has been occuring in the backdrop of my life, at the forefront, I have had my own set of challenges. Those as well I have shared bits of here and there; including hurricane Maria and my tough search for a house in this overpriced LA market. Honestly, I do not know what to make of 2017. I had thought 2016 sucked. This year has been tougher. Much tougher. But I am strong. That is what I told someone this morning. I am a strong woman. I am proud of my strength. But, I must admit, why do I have to continously be so strong? Well, for starters, I am a Taurus. Then, I was raised to be strong. There is nothing more to it.
It is within this personal strength context that I answer all the questions posed to me about how I am doing. A few weeks back, I was at an event and bumped into someone who asked me how I was doing and I started to make a face. But before I could even answer, they tapped me on the shoulder and told me to hang in there. This person is very well-meaning. But I get this reaction a lot from those that have an inkling as to what I am going through.
Here is the thing. No, I am not not that great right now. But I will be. I am going to get through this all and will look back on this hard time in life and be grateful that I moved on through so many literal and figurative storms. As R.E.M. noted years ago,
It’s ok. No. I am not ok (right now), but I will be. That is what I want to tell everybody. Maybe I can get a t-shirt made. That would be kind of cool. Maybe I can get a new line of shirts started that just go ahead and preemptively answer people’s awkward questions. Could be “Yes, that is a pimple” and “No, I am not pregnant” and so forth. Only issue is that I already have way too many t-shirts. What is a girl to do these days?
I take solace knowing that at some point I will be ok. Things may get a little tougher before it’s all ok, but that time will come. It has to. I will make it so for I always have. I’m a New Yorker. Enough said.