When a Smile is Needed

It’s the Thursday of Spring Break. Only a few more days of relative freedom. So why am I smiling, you ask? Because I NEED to smile. This week has been gray and largely low-feeling, especially at night. Not the best headspace for Spring Break. I’m off but everyone else is not. There are responsibilities that keep us at home and unable to drive to/stay out late with friends of an evening. Grading waits menacingly on my kitchen table like a sword of Damocles dangling over my head. So I NEED to smile today. I need to remember the good.

*My daughter in my floppy sunhat and her heart-shaped sunglasses ready for her “beach party” at preschool

*Kisses and “I love you’s” from my husband

*Unexpected, wonderful time with friends

*Reading, writing, and nap time in a quiet house

*Often-read Scripture verses touching my heart with new relevance and encouragement

*Rain pattering on my window panes and thunder growling and purring through the clouds

Today I need to remember the good. Today I need to smile. Today I need to choose the good, choose contentment. Today I need determination over motivation. Happiness is not just a happening today; today it needs to be a decision, a choice for me.

So here’s a smile. I hope it helps yours along, too, dear one.



A Smile Like Wine

Her lips were dark like malbec, the smile that tilted them almost coy in its own innocence. They were lips unused to color, unsure of just how to function in it. How widely she may smile, how freely she may laugh. Her lips trembled and stumbled through it until they decided, seemingly of their own volition, that they could not maintain such primness and elected merely for truth of being.

They parted when she laughed, to let her voice ring out. They beamed when she smiled, her teeth flashing brightly against the dark of her smile and catching her bottom lip shyly at times. They flew eagerly, drawing accidentally elegant shapes, when she talked about something of which she was passionate. They fluttered like dark birds in that moment, like the starlings that wheeled in lovely shapes overhead.

Coy innocence. Accidental elegance. Unintentional grace. A wine-dark smile beaming a sun-bright spirit.