It seems like a simple, straight-forward question: How are you?
But, is it?
I’ll run into a neighbor while on a walk and we’ll exchange “Hello’s” and “How are you’s?” We smile and reply with some form of, “Oh, hanging in there” or, “Oh, you know, fine.”
When I’m on a phone meeting with a colleague and someone asks the other, “How’s it going?” the other most often than not replies with a laugh and, “Oh, good.”
During a global pandemic, how is one supposed to respond to, “How are you?” (or any similar variation to the question).
I really don’t know. And, I don’t think there is a right or wrong answer.
If I really stop to think about how I truly feel, it’s many feelings.
Tired. Missing people. Frustrated. Stressed. Angry. Sad. Disappointed. Really angry. Kind of sad. Wondering why I can’t stop eating an entire bag of chips in one sitting. Exhausted. Fine. OK. Good. Well enough. Happy. Guilty. Stuck. Annoyed. Frustrated. Very tired.
Sometimes, I’m not sure if I even truly know how I feel. Overall I do feel “fine” because my family and I are healthy, we are employed and have a roof over our heads. Compared to many others, I am great, I guess. But then if I think deeper or read the news, I don’t feel so great about the state of things.
How long will we be living like this? When will I be able to hang out with my friends and family again? When will I be able to walk by a stranger in the grocery store without feeling stressed? Is all of this really the new normal?
Tired. Good. Fine. OK. Drained. Feeling like my sleep schedule is off. Wondering why I keep having stressful dreams. Concerned. Annoyed. Happy. Guilty. Stuck. Sad. Angry. Numb. Grateful. Fine.
In the span of one day, it’s not uncommon to feel most of these varying emotions. And, I know I’m among good company with everyone else.
So, how are you feeling today?
How are you?