You’re Never Fully Dressed Without a Smile

I am a natural smiler – and always have been. I can’t help it. Even if I am low as the dust bunnies buried in your carpet, I go out in public and have a ready smile. It’s like being on auto-pilot.
People notice this about me and comment on it frequently. It makes me appear to be very happy to see people and fills them with warmth towards me.Is it fake? No, I don’t think so. Is it autotuned? Probably. I was born with a joie d’vivre (joy of life) and irrepressible spirit, and I have therefore smiled through my life’s most difficult trials and challenges. I have always looked happy and thrilled even when that wasn’t the case.

I was probably at one of my lowest periods when my 18 year marriage was ending in a divorce many years ago. I remember people seeing me in public afterwards offering condolences. (This is both normal and appropriate by the way because it is the DEATH of a marriage and family) Those same people were always marveling that I was still smiling and that I was such a trooper. This was being said to a person who went inside her large walk-in closet at the end of the day to cry like a baby so my kids wouldn’t see me break down. (Reminds me of the song, Smile though your heart is breaking…)

Or like the show Annie, where the title of this blog’s song comes from. If there was ever a person (real or fictional) who didn’t have a reason to smile, it was little Orphan Annie.
There are those people who have naturally down-turned expressions. I don’t think these people are necessary down or grumpy people. That is auto-pilot for them. We have a great Yiddish term  Farbisseneh for this facial malady.
But for me, like putting on clothes and makeup, when I go out, I put on my smile each and every day in every situation. Because I am never fully dressed without a smile.
Here’s a photo gallery of my smiles:
Arlene Baby
Ok, I admit, I just threw this in  to show a natural pout preceded my smile
Arlene 16
Here at 17 – couldn’t find any earlier childhood ones
arlenephils1
Publicity smile for the Phillies when I worked for them
arlene forma1l
Wedding smile
Arlene 1
Current day smile

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