It depends. It always depends. I am no neophyte in the arena of cleverly (or not-so-cleverly) phrased questions designed to gauge one's mental state. Supposedly this glass question is the ultimate diagnostic device of pessimism or optimism, and is often espoused as quite telling by the arbiters of such things.
I can be anything at any time and often both at all times: cautiously cheerful, cynically hopeful, and always — always — open to interpretation. My hypothetical H2O is at half-measure, sloshing around curves and up and down the roller coaster that is my world, with tracks that pass inspection, but remain consistently in need of some level of repair. And while I've done a great deal of self-maintenance, I've always known there was someone standing by to catch me when I stepped off and slid down to the ground. For the past 12 years, that person has been my husband Jamie. His arms are strong — and they've needed to be. I'm not easy. I'm worth it, but I'm not easy. You try maintaining this mixed metaphor of water in a coaster car. Yeah, that's what I thought.
I never once doubted Jamie would always be there for me. Better or for worse, sickness and in health, richer or for poorer ... yada, yada, yada ... yeah. Then came December 15, 2008, and every one of those phrases began taunting us at once. Jamie was diagnosed with bladder cancer and needed radical surgery. I was unemployed and the economy was in the toilet. So there's the sickness and the poorer for you. Then the real surprise came, and it wasn't the worse. It was the better. And it shocked the hell out of me.
I'm trying to figure it out, as well as recognize this woman in the mirror who seems awfully strong. I've never seen her until now. But I like her.
And you might, too.
Welcome to my half-glassed life. Jump on in. The water is well, tepid.
EDITED TO ADD:
Jamie lost his fight with cancer
November 1, 2010, only two weeks
after a surprising metastasis
to his pelvis was discovered.
My half-glassed life continues
to memorialize his life and love.