“I’m fine. . . .”

by Jan on September 2, 2011

“You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, you just might find, you get what you need.” ~ Rolling Stones

In a phone call with my grandson today, I learned another lesson about hope.  It went something like this:

Me: How are you?

Julian:  Fine, thank you. (long pause)

Father: Tell Nana how you really feel.

Julian: I am ANGRY! I want to go swimming and no one will let me.  And I am angry because I want to go skinny dipping and no one will let me do that either.

Julian was not hopeful about getting what he wanted today, that was clear.

We learn at an early age, when asked how we are, to say “we’re fine,” and not to say what we really feel. In my early life it was not OK to speak the truth if that meant you might upset someone or rock the boat. I am still learning how to say what I feel, to be authentic to myself, and I still need to be encouraged to tell my truth.

Thankfully, my son encouraged Julian to speak what was true for him in that moment.  What freedom this young boy has – to be allowed to be angry, to be dissatisfied and to have permission to be vulnerable and authentic.

What Julian taught me today is that sometimes speaking our truth is enough, even though we don’t always get what we want.  It is enough to say what is on our minds, to feel what we feel – that lets us move on and see that we really ARE fine. There’s a lot of hope in that.

We may not get everything we want, but in the end, we usually do get what we need.