Thanksgiving dinner with the family, and the inevitable question is asked, “So, how have you been?”
And I froze.
Do I talk about how many visits we’ve had to the hospital, how many (too many to count) times we’ve been to the doctor, how many specialists we’ve been referred to, how many medications and side effects we’ve endured? Do I list the thoughts that plague me as I try to sleep, both the ones I know so well and the nameless dreads that haunt me? Do I talk about how the world I know is fading away and being replaced by one I don’t understand, one that’s gaudy and mean and unfamiliar?
Or do I tell them that I read a poem that was so beautiful that I couldn’t repeat it, because I choked up every time? Do I talk about how perfect my mornings are, sharing sleepy coffee with Mona and waking up sweetly, softly, slowly? Do I talk about the time our old cat Amanda climbed into my lap and fell asleep, and how at her age of nineteen I’m well aware that these moments are numbered but that this one was wonderful and serene and I’ll never forget it?
“Oh… We’re fine.”