09 October 2011

Crack a Smile


On one of the worst days of my entire life, I figured out that the act of smiling makes you feel something good and positive.  It's like magic.  Even if it's a smile just to yourself.  In all seriousness, EVEN A FORCED SMILE DOES SOMETHING TO YOU INSIDE.  I can't tell you how often I forced myself to smile in moments of complete despair........and it caused a shift!  When I figured this out, I was walking underground through the subway station at 34th street, coming home from work.  It was during my first year of infertility and also it was one of the earlier moments when my first husband let me know that he didn't feel love for me the way he wanted to.  I might as well have been walking through my own grave.  The only way I can describe it is, I felt dead.  (Obviously this was way before I learned to handle trials and came to peace with my life.)  I felt so much grief and despair then that I could barely even breath and barely walk.  I literally thought I might fall over and die.  But a miracle happened.  I had the idea in that moment to simply smile to myself.  And I did!  It took almost no energy to do it.  But that tiny smile on my face automatically put the littlest burst of positivity into my brain and it gave me the strength to keep walking.  And to this day, I still use this trick and I smile to myself whenever I need a little boost.  TRY IT !!!!!!!!!!  I dare you to not think or feel something positive or to not feel your eyes sparkle a teeny bit when you smile.  :)  I'd love to hear if anyone else has some success with this.

Hoping you all are having a beautiful weekend.  Fall is here in New York in all it's glory.  I went on a run in Prospect Park early Saturday morning, and felt so full of life.  And, I am feeling overwhelmed with gratitude for all of you dear readers.  THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart for reading and & for sharing back with me so much of your strength & wisdom.  I am truly overwhelmed with the connections I am feeling with you already as we all walk along on our own paths.  I look forward to all that we have ahead.

With love & gratitude for all of you,


P.S.  About a year or so after I figured out my little smiling trick, Elaine Dalton, the lovely President of the worldwide Young Women's Organization, called out to young women all over the world and encouraged them to smile every single day.  I was all over that. 

(Photo above taken in about 2007.   I was on vacation with my first husband.  At the time, I knew he was thinking of leaving our marriage.  It was a very sad time for me.  I had not yet learned how to face trials.  I was barely surviving.  My little smiles were the wee beginning of me developing some inner strength.)


  1. I just did it while reading the article, and yes, it works.

  2. I love reading your blog Mara!! Thanks for letting me know about it! Your words are truly inspirational and I look forward to your posts each day! :) You are such a strong woman, and incredible role model and example to me!

  3. I found your site through Design Mom and I'm hooked - thank you for being willing to share your insights and humor and wisdom! Your email exchanges from your early days make me smile. My husband proposed after five days together, both of us having come out of lengthy past relationships. But like you said, when you know what you want you recognize it - and we had to go for it. :)

  4. Lauren & Erin - speaking of smiling, you two have some of the best ones I've ever seen. I catch myself staring at you, Lauren, cause you are just so full of joy and it is wonderful to see. :)

  5. Heidelade! 5 Days! Good for you guys. It's kinda awesome when you know exactly what you want ...... makes the decision pretty easy!


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