I am generally a glass half full kind of person.
Today’s prompt from the Daily Post is asking if you are a glass half empty or glass half full person. And if a gun were put to my head I would totally say half full.
Unless I was really thirsty and it were an actual glass. Then, I might consider it empty and warranting a refill.
I look at it as a sequence of events thing when it comes to actual glasses. If I just started to fill it, then it is half full. If I drank half of it, then it is half empty. Get the picture?
I don’t look at life the exact same way I look at bevarages. In life, I am all about my bright sides and purposes behind things. So, half-full is my tendency.
Patrick often teases that I have a high baseline. He tends towards worst case scenarios and I see bright sides to just about anything. It works in our marriage. If you average us out, we are probably glass neutral.
In high school, I remember prepping for our IB exams and while waiting to go over our most recent practice exams I was chipperly talking about how at least it was just a practice and that at least we know how bad it can be. Someone pointed out that I am rather optimistic. I was surprised.
The reason this is surprising is that despite my outward optimism and enthusiasm, I am rather cynical and sarcastic. So, I guess, I used to think that made me a pessimist. Just because I tried to point out negatives. It is just that I have generally tended towards the positive. Even at my worst. Sometimes it was a twisted positive, but a positive nonetheless.
The thing that gets me when I say the glass is half full is that most people assume that makes me excessively positive and optimistic. And to some, I am sure I am.
I have this fear of being too positive, though.
False hope is still hope. I am the first to admit that. But, in the oncology world (and in the rest of the world too), I see so many people living on so much false hope, it breaks my heart. I love to see them content in their hope, but I hate to watch them crash down once the untruths behind the hope reveal themselves.
I have had it happen to me too.
When I was an optimistic little kid, my aunt was dying of cancer. She had a few good days. I was convinced she was getting better. And that God answered my prayers to make her better. Then she died. I was crushed. Clearly something failed. It didn’t matter how sick I was told she was. How sick I knew she was. I believed she was getting better. And that was great until it all went wrong.
As a result of this, my people watching and other life experience, I think I fear having false hope. And I am very bothered by other people having false hope.
It is really difficult to balance hope with false hope, though. Optimism and reality.
I like to say I am a realistic optimist.
I say I hope someone gets well. I look on the bright side of any situation. But, I don’t avoid the bad. I often still expect reasonable badness to happen. I just know that we will get through the badness.
When moving, I expected lots of little complications and problems. I anticipated something getting lost or breaking. I expected to get lost a million times. I got annoyed when those things happened. But, I also knew that despite the fact we had no furniture for weeks that we could make light of the fact that we could sit on the floor and that, in reality, it was nowhere near the end of the world. I was pleasantly surprised that nothing was broken, which, to me turned out to be a huge bonus.
Realistic optimism. Things often turn out better than you expect.
Moral of the story: The glass is half full. It may get less full before it is over with. That isn’t the end of the world. You still have something to drink.