Do You Know I'm Smiling?

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Do You Know I'm Smiling?

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I pride myself on being a friendly southerner, mainly while out shopping or eating at restaurants. I know retail and food service employees have very difficult jobs, so I always try to be friendly, understanding and tip well. One of the ways I’ve always tried to appear friendly is by smiling. But now with the COVID-19 pandemic, masks are required pretty much everywhere. Essential workers are overworked, and now my face, covered with a mask from the nose down is hiding my smile. They cannot tell how friendly I appear; now I just have to try and say loudly(so they can understand me from behind the mask), that I don’t mind how long I had to wait, I understand they are busy, and it’s okay. I usually try to ease their concern with a nice smile. I never realized how much not being able to smile at people would impact me. I’ve never felt more pressure to “smile with my eyes” or “smize” as Tyra Banks would famously tell the models on the America’s Next Top Model television show.

Life’s hard for smilers, no one can see our beautiful expressions with masks on.

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This item was submitted on October 15, 2020 by Keisha Gordon using the form “Share Your Story” on the site “A Journal of the Plague Year”:

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