I miss smiles.

I miss seeing smiles, and I miss smiling at others.

Please, let me quickly explain that I am 100% in favour of wearing masks, and this is in no way an anti-mask thing. But one of the downsides of wearing a fabric mask is that people cannot see the bottom half of my face, and I miss using it.

I wish that, when I was smiling, people could see it. Yesterday I had to stop walking somewhere for a moment so a person could maneuver their car into a parking spot. I smiled at them, as a way of saying, “hey, it’s okay – take your time; I’m good with it.” But it was only after I was able to walk past them that it occurred to me that of course they didn’t know I was smiling at them.

I find that in lieu of smiles I am giving folks a thumbs up symbol a lot – one if it would have been a small smile, and two if it would have been a big, see-my-teeth, almost-laughing-out-loud kind of smile. Because people need smiles: they need to see them, and they need to give them.

In these days of darkness (where I live the sun was basically gone by 3:30 yesterday) and cold (hey, it’s winter) and a pandemic (oh yeah…) seeing someone smile brightens our heart. And smiling at someone else reminds us, deep inside, that other people matter, and that whatever life happens to toss at is at any moment, we’re in it together.

So thumbs up! Smile!