I’m [not] Fine.

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“How are you?”
“I’m fine.”

“How was school?”
“It was fine.”

Have you ever noticed how most people always answer with the word ‘fine’ when asked something?  Not ‘great’, not ‘good’, not even ‘okay’. But ‘fine’. You probably do it too. I know I do.

For someone who chooses all her words very carefully, I’ve always found that word to be a bit strange. Have you noticed how that word says a lot without really saying anything at all? What does it mean really? Does it mean that you’re great? That you’re doing really well? Or atleast doing okay? Or.. Does it mean that you’re not okay at all? Or maybe it means that you’re just tired of everything and how nobody even seems to notice.

Sometimes, all we want when we say we are ‘fine’, is for someone to call us out on your bullshit. For them to take a good look at us and say “you’re not fine.” The reason most people are reluctant to show how they really feel, is because nobody actually cares. This is also the reason why most people are happy with that answer. I mean, if you say you’re fine, you must be, right? They don’t really want to know how you’re doing. It’s just basic courtesy, so that they can sleep better at night knowing they’ve done their job. So that they don’t feel guilty. They did their job, and now they have other things to worry about. Like, why that guy isn’t texting them back when he said he would. Is it because he doesn’t like them? Or did he lose their number? Maybe he was never interested in the first place, and was just trying not to hurt their feelings. See? So many problems of their own. Not enough time to worry about yours too!

But then, there are others, who actually care when they ask what’s wrong. Who would be there for you and listen to your problems even if we have hundreds of our own. Who would stay up all night just to listen to you ramble on about the same things again and again. The people for whom their problems always take a backseat in favour of yours. The people who are “just fine.” The people like me.

-R

30 thoughts on “I’m [not] Fine.

  1. I’m the strange one who chooses to say (in place of that dreaded “fine”) things such as “stupendous!”, “”al dente!”, or “absolutely fantastic!” when I’m happy. Usually the person asking will smile and make a remark about how happy I seem. Sharing joy is fun. But if I’m not happy I sometimes will actually answer them with how I really feel and that’s when I get rather strange looks. If I babble about my crap day I often times get that look that says, “Oh no, now I have to listen and offer advice while I’m just wondering why this girl is still rambling at me. I don’t care that you spilled your milk this morning. Leave me alone now.” Strangers are strange.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. I have to admit, I don’t make a habit of babbling to strangers, it’s more of an experiment when I’m in the right mood for it. I too am usually really quiet when I’m not that 100% okay that everyone seems to expect from me. And why do they expect it? Why are humans so uncomfortable with the absence of happiness?

        Liked by 2 people

      2. I know! They don’t want you to be sad. And even if you are, they keep asking you what’s wrong, even the ones that don’t really care. And I HATE it when people keep pestering me to tell them what’s wrong when I’m crying. I mean, can’t you see I’m crying here? Jeez.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Nicely penned. I tend to say “I am fine” most of the time even when I am not because in my experience, nobody really cares about why you are happy and why you are not (except for few people and it is worth telling them because they actually care). Have a great day.

    Liked by 1 person

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