The power of a smile. My dad used to have mottos or sayings on everything he had for advertising. One was “Boshell Enterprises: Doing common things uncommonly well”. Another was “Smile, it makes people wonder what you’ve been up to”.
Smiles are multilingual. They cross barriers. Smiling can overcome even the worst of attitudes.
My oldest (Weatherman here on my blog, bless his meteorological heart) could be in the Olympics of Pouting. If there was an Olympic event for biggest, most heartfelt pout, he could be in the top 3, no lie. And, unfortunately for me, he comes by that honestly, because I had pouting down to an art form at his age too, I was just more scared of my dad than Weatherman is of me.
So last week, our church held revival, and Weatherman (and the other 2) didn’t really want to be there. And it wasn’t even a “boring” revival, it was a musical revival, what in the world was there not to like about that? The group doing the revival had very little preaching and lots of singing, and that’s usually the boys thing. But not this time, uh huh, no way, and I started really smiling at Weatherman, really mugging it up, and his dad, Hubs, got into it, and when my husband smiles, it lights up his whole face (I fell in love with that smile). Poor Weatherman, me and his dad just grinning like idiots at him and he’s trying to hold the frown, hold it, oh, there’s a corner trembling, there’s another upturn, and finally…
He smiles back. Very unwillingly, but he smiles.
Smiling is contagious. I am a smiler, and I notice when I smile at people, they tend to smile back (because frowning is rude, right?). And I got a beautiful smile this week.
I don’t visit my dad as much as I did when he first entered assisted living. I never missed a week, and I made my boys go with me. The place he is in now, though, is not as guest friendly, and the boys get very impatient, so I go see Dad about once every 2 weeks, and sometimes less, if life gets really busy.
And truth be told, those times when I visit and I get a look like, “I know you, I know you belong to me, but I just can’t recall.” Those are tough visits. He’s trying so hard, but just can’t get it. I am reminded of lyrics to a favorite song of mine:
“I seem to recognize your face,
Haunting, familiar yet, I can’t seem to place it
Cannot find the candle of thought to light your name
Lifetimes are catching up with me…
Hearts and thoughts they fade, fade away”