For all of my life, including the past two years and 3 months, I am constantly asked how I am doing.
Like most people, the question comes up during part of the everyday, rote, human interaction. And, especially in grief, I have learned that most people don't really want to know how other people are doing.
The expectation is usually that someone will greet you and say, "Hi, How are you?" You will then respond, "Good, and you?", no matter how you really feel. To which they reply "Good, thanks", no matter how they really feel. And then you will part ways, feeling fake and mechanical.
Well guess what. Since Catelyn died, things haven't been 'Good' very often. And of all the words I reply to "How are you?" with, quite simply, "Good" doesn't even register in my mind as a possibility.
Initially, I couldn't even use words to answer that question. Instead, I would shrug and mumble, "enh." Of course, I realized that people wanted a positive answer, even if it was fake and not the truth. So, I started with "Okay". After a few months, I even worked up to "Fine".
At my job, it is my responsibility to greet people all day. I play the robotic 'how are you' game multiple times a day. Generally, I try to say, "I'm doing well, how are you?" whether I feel "well" or not. Late last week, a co-worker passed me in the hallway and said "Hi, how are you?", and I said, "Good, how are you?"
As we continued in our separate directions, I realized what I said. Without thinking, I replied that I was "good".
How weird it felt to say that word. I can guarantee you that as hard as I've tried to "fake" my answers in
the last 2 years and three months, I have never been able to pull of
"Good". I've never even tried.
So I paused and thought about it, and realized that it was true. I actually felt good.
It's not every day, but I actually had a moment where I was good. :)