Ah, that question. Such a simple question, asked in so many ways from inquiring glances to backtracking or treading lightly around certain conversations to ignoring the subject all together to asking straight out.
There’s really only one right answer to it. Yes, of course I am.
Sometimes, that’s the truth. Other times, people can convince themselves that it’s the truth. She didn’t get upset. She smiled. She commented or “liked” on Facebook.
The reality is ambiguous. One day, I’m nodding with genuine sympathy at an acquaintance’s complaints about being overdue and wishing the baby would come soon, the next I’m bitterly thinking better than the f*cking reality of preterm birth. Not easily reduced to a tweet, a sound-bite, or an inspirational quote. At once understandable and also sometimes unlikeable and frustrating and uncomfortable and even unfair.
It perplexes me, the cultural demand for openness, the popularity of memoirs or the expectation of ‘authenticity’ in so many contexts, but while the People magazine article clawing open a celebrity sells or the confessional blog post goes viral, seeing that same exposure live so often produces the almost reflexive but you’re okay now, right?