How Are You Feeling?

Wed, Feb 22, 2012

Multiple Sclerosis



“How are you feeling?”

I get asked that a lot.

Notice My Odd Sock's scowl.

Notice My Odd Sock's scowl.


“Can my family stand under your enormous head to get out of the rain?”

I’ve been asked that one too.  (I have a rather large noggin)

But not nearly as often as being asked about how I am feeling.


And it is not just doctors, family members and close friends doing the asking.

I’ve been asked that by casual acquaintances (folks who know I have MS) as well as people I’ve just met…

“Nice to meet you.  So, you have MS, huh?”


“How’re you feelin?”


Sock needs a "mood ring."

Sock needs a "mood ring."



It has gotten to the point that I want to wear a big sign around my neck so I don’t have to repeat myself!



I know they are simply concerned for my well-being, but geez–this is overkill!

If you have MS, you probably hear the same question—and are probably just as tired of answering.


The Funny Meter

The Funny Meter


Yeah, I know, Funny Meter.  There is no humor in this piece.

You want funny?

Go watch a GOP debate and leave me alone.



Funny Meter taking a different approach.

Funny Meter taking a different approach.


Noo, I didn’t have my funny bone surgically removed.

I’m just being grumpy.

Hey, Fox’s “Futureama” is on TV–I dare you to go find the humor in that!



Sorry.  Now where was I?

I know exactly how you answer the question..”How are you feeling?”

You smile and look down before finally saying “I’m doing all right.”

(I’ll take “Let’s Change The Conversation” for 200, Alex!)

What? Are you going to depress them into a coma with your bathroom issues, fuzzy vision or episodes of muscle spasms?  Hell no.  You suck it up and reply “I’m doing all right.”


We as MSers are not alone.  People living with cancer or other diseases probably go through the same, daily interrogation.  And I can only imagine they answer much the same way.




Please share your response to being asked “How are you feeling?”

Do you give a generic answer?

Do you go “middle of the road?”

Or do you give the full blown account?




How am I feeling?  Pretty darn good now that that’s off my chest.


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15 Responses to “How Are You Feeling?”

  1. Rod Says:

    First time to “Odd Sock” – I like!

    My usual response to “how are you feeling/doing? is:

    “Not any worse.”

  2. Laura Says:

    My response is, “I’m in good shape for the shape I’m in.” =) People don’t know how to response and the conversation goes down a different path.

  3. My Odd Sock Says:

    Thank you for reading. My socks are very articulate.

  4. Kim @ Stuff could.... Says:

    You describe ‘how are you feeling’ so well. I like your socks that describe the feelings

  5. My Odd Sock Says:


    I agree. Most folks enjoy chatting about themselves–me, not so much. So I give them the “plastic” fine and then ask them how THEY are doing. I got the makings of a “talk show host!”

  6. SpeckledBrain Says:

    SOSDD (Same Ol’ S#!t Different Day)

    Simple and to the point.

  7. Shel Says:

    With exception to those who really know and care to hear, it’s anywhere from okay to fine to fabulous (fake it, ya might make it?) although those days when I’m obviously “off” I usually answer that it could be worse, I just wish it was better….

    Or, I might quip that where I have feeling, all is well, or burning, or feels like…..

    Makeup, fixed hair, and clothing other than sweats is a fake it til ya make it day….if ya look good, ya must be doing better, right? Only the “inner circle” gets the down and dirty….cuz we can laugh at my dysfunction in a make the best of it, entertaining way… pity, it is what it is

    My best peeps (who wonder if I’m contagious) take the hits for me when they spill on themselves in public, fall up stairs, say stupid things (ataxia????)….and better yet are my peeps who understand me when I speak gibberish and don’t miss a beat when I do stupid stuff (walk into walls, trip over large furniture, lock up for a few minutes in a freeze frame….)

    If nothing else, I (we) can be highly entertaining to those with open minds (not to be confused with our cheese heads….we get special exception for confusion….) and for those who are embarrassed…I say get a life…or enjoy the one you have…. Things can change pretty darn quickly!

    So, Odd Sock, what do you say when folks ask?

  8. Heather Says:

    When I am asked “How are you feeling?”, my answer is always “I’m okay, because we don’t have time for me to tell you how I really feel.” I’m smiling as I say this…..and give a little laugh. Then people realize I’m not okay, I feel like crap, and every part of my body is on some weird trip of it’s own.

  9. Cindy Says:

    I usually answer…I’ve had better and I’ve had worse so I guess I’m OK. That usually stops the questioning. They don’t really want to know all the sordid details!

  10. Mary K. Mennenga Says:

    Most of the time I just say fine and how are doing? Most like to talk about themselves most of the time anyway.

    The one that gets me worked up is then I tell them I’m fine or something like that,some people will go behind my back and ask my caregiver Jane ” how is she really doing? Now that I know what they’er doing. Jane has agreed to say she’s doing good. If I wanted them to know I would have told them myself.
    Thankfully Jane is understanding of my reasons as to why It’s none of their business.

  11. Muff Says:

    I’m right there with you, Sock. I’m always asked how I’m doing, and with my sarcastic attitude (which I call dry humor) I want to give them something clever. Example: 1)I just joined the Stuntsmen Assn. and I’m practicing my falls. 2) I’m just about ready to call my embalmer. 3) With my hands. (I stole that last one from my Dad.
    No, instead, I just paste on the smile and say, “I’m pretty good. How are you?” *Sigh*

  12. Margaret Says:

    I have a few best friends who really want “the full blown account”. They will drill me until they are satisfied with the status of my health. However, this past weekend I attended a large wedding knowing I would see many friends and acquaintances I had not seen in 6 months. I don’t get out much anymore. I went to the wedding knowing that every conversation would start out “how are you feeling”, so I had psyched myself out that I was going to respond with the generic “I”m doing ok”. Then they would comment on how good I look. If only they knew it took 3 people to get me ready for the wedding, and I was doing everything I could to stay upright in my power chair. I wish I could have worn a sign, but thought it would look tacky with my coctail attire. :)

  13. Karen Says:

    “Do you give a generic answer?”
    “Do you go “middle of the road?”
    “Or do you give the full blown account?”

    Depends on how I am feeling that day ;) and who is asking the question.

  14. Kim Says:

    Yep, I respond with a sunny “I’m GOOD!” To my close friends, though, I give them a litany of symptoms and I know it’s okay to do that with them.

    Recently I responded to an acquaintance: “Pretty crappy.” A surprised, alarmed look came over his face. “Bet you weren’t expecting that response,” I joked. He said no and didn’t inquire further–and that was okay. He and his wife had stopped by briefly on their way to a marriage counseling session, so I knew his head was full of his own troubles.

    I don’t mind the question, honestly, nor do I mind the reactions. I don’t even mind being told that I look good, in fact, I like it a lot. Am I in the minority on this issue?

  15. Judy Says:

    Here’s a poem I wrote about the feeling better question:

    At a loss for words
    when someone asks how I am
    When? At one? At six?

    They don’t realize
    MS, a quick-change artist,
    loves fresh, new costumes.

    So I nod and smile
    grateful they care to ask me
    if I feel better.

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