Tuesday, May 4, 2010

"Smile Constantly. ;)"

I do this sometimes. Someone says something perfectly innocent, non-serious, and even (maybe) unimportant, and I attach to it undue significance. But, Kristen's buzz post said "smile constantly" and then there was a winky-face. Kristen, sorry, but I must adamantly - and with the deepest respect - disagree with your statement.

You guys know that I have a tragic history when it comes to smiling. Or, maybe you didn't. Probably you didn't, because it isn't true. But whenever I write depressing poetry, I always have in my mind a picture of the perfect christians who refuse to stop smiling. My church is (I guess, was, at this point) full of those people. The people who never let on that anything was wrong. And I hated those people. I don't any more, I love them, but I still don't like that they smile all the time. I don't like painted on smiles. I love real smiles! I love when people laugh and you can see their happiness visible in their visible teeth. (...humans are weird.) I love watching real joy, I love seeing real smiles. And I hate fake smiles. They devalue the smile in general - like overusing the phrase "I love you," or "I hate you" - by making it more common. And it's a lie. The truth is, I don't feel like smiling always, and to do so anyway is a lie. Sometimes, I want to cry. (...I feel like a "dammit" would make that statement more manly.) The truth is, there are seasons of sadness, and I refuse to smile when I don't want to do so.

I've been fake before, and I don't want to be it again. If I feel like crying, I will cry. If I feel like smiling, I will smile. I will not lie to you just because christians are supposed to be happy all the time. I don't even believe that we are supposed to be happy all the time. I will not wear figurative makeup.


  1. Some people just like smiling. It would be fake for them not to smile.

    Figurative makeup. I like it. The phrase, I mean, not, yeah.

  2. Micah! I'm sorry. I'm sorry for inducing this post. I don't want to be defending myself, but oh, oh, I am crying in frustration, in regret.

    What is this lie that I live?

    I'm sorry for reacting so emotionally, just this makes me think about so many things all at once... it pains me.

    I sympathize with this. So much. I appreciate you disagreeing.

  3. I concur, Micah.

    God wants to make us joyful, or happy, yes. But . . . perhaps pretending you are happy is cheapening salvation and resurrection. Pretending you are happy is pretending the job is done when it isn't. God forces us through seasons of sadness on purpose, and to pretend they are not there . . . is to neglect their purpose or meaning.

  4. amen.
    sometimes life is shit.

    and we have to keep on living.

    (and it seems best to do so honestly)