bipolar mom shares her insights on everyday life

Posts tagged ‘smile’

Check This out, Miss Manners!

We continue our series of posts on GOOD MANNERS today with these gems:

  • Smile
  • Knock before entering
  • Don’t lose your temper
  • Respect others’ feelings
  • Be patient
  • Say “Excuse me”
  • Speak quietly

I like these a lot! In fact, I can’t choose just one to write about. So, as a bonus for you, I’m going to touch on each one.

  • Smile – To me, this is a no brainer. I smile all the time. Even when I am feeling down. (at least in public) I was having a rough day yesterday, but when I went to the store, I used all the energy I had to smile at everyone that works there. When they asked, “How are you?” I didn’t say, “Crummy” or “You have no idea.” I, of course, said, “Good, and how are you?” I’ve never thought of smiling as a good manner, but I’m glad it’s on the list.
  • Knock before entering – This to me is just common sense. If you don’t knock before you enter, you may get a BIG SURPRISE!  YIKES! I realize that this is aimed towards children, though. And, in my opinion, this is one that you teach by example. Sure, we started telling our kids, “You have to knock!” early on, but we also knocked on their doors early on to show them how important it is.
  • Don’t lose your temper – Okay, I’m working on this one too. Just like being on time, I’m getting better at it. No one wants to be around someone who loses their temper. Take a deep breath and ask yourself, “is it worth all this?” Most of the time, it’s not.
  • Respect others’ feelings – and I’m going to add “point of view.” Note: it does not say agree. Respect is another thing entirely. I think another way of saying this is “Think before you speak.”  Many times, if we had just waited a few seconds before we made a big deal out of something, we would have handled it differently. I know people (and I’m sure you do too) that seem to be “without a filter” as I like to call it. They just say whatever comes to mind without thinking about how that will affect the other people in the conversation. I have a good friend who has been known to say, “You didn’t mean for that to come out that way, did you?” I love that as a response to those “no filter” people.
  • Be patient – Yeah. Hurry up and wait. That guy in line behind you who is sighing big sighs and making comments about the wait time really needs to get a grip and shut up. Be patient, Bucko.
  • Say “Excuse me” – This is one I feel like it is dying out, and I’m sad about that. Maybe I say it too often. We tell our kids when they are little, “Say ‘excuse me.’” But do we say it often enough? When you walk in front of someone in the grocery aisle, say “excuse me.” When you burp, for cryin’ out loud, say “excuse me.” And, no, I don’t care how often you burp. Say it every time.
  • Speak quietly – WHAT!?!? (Obviously this isn’t my strong suit.) There are times when I am out that I know to keep my voice down, though. And, there times when I’m just too loud. Okay, I need to work on this one too. BUT SO DO A LOT OF YOU!

Oops. Excuse me. That was a little rude.

Reasons to Laugh

A break today from health issues and instead a talk of personality characteristics.

When most people describe me, they almost always mention my sense of humor.  At least that’s what I’ve heard.  “Yes, Matilda talks about you all the time!  She says you are really funny.”  Some people might find that a pressure-filled comment to launch into some Seinfeld-esque stand-up routine.  But, I usually just laugh.

My laugh.  Apparently, it is quite distinctive and contageous.  Well, maybe not contageous, but people say that when they hear me laugh, they want to know what is going on that would make me laugh.  Interesting.  And cool.  At least it’s not Janice’s laugh from “Friends.”  No one says, “Wow.  Your laugh is unique.”  “Unique” is another word for weird or odd, but has a nicer connotation.  I once purchased a wine rack for a friend’s wedding.  The lady at the register said, “Oh!  What a unique wine rack.”  I took it back the next day.  I didn’t want to be known as the one who gave the unique gift.

I have been recognized by my laugh.  One day, I had three friends seek me out in stores because they heard my laugh and recognized it.  Yeah, my laugh isn’t a quiet one, but it’s not obnoxiously loud either.  Well, maybe in church, but that’s different.

My mom is probably laughing her head off right now.  Because, strangely enough, and I emphasize strangely, I was once unhappy with my laugh.

I truly have no idea what was going on my head at this time in my life.  I think I was in my early teens.  (At least I hope I was.)  Apparently, I didn’t like the way I laughed, so I tried out new laughs.  As you can imagine, my mom says it was a very irritating period.  And annoying.  She finally asked me what was going on, and I said, “I’m trying out new laughs.”  That makes me laugh right there.  Who does that?

I guess after you’ve gotten hair cuts, wardrobe changes, and tried out new makeup, what’s left to change?  Your laugh?  Only I would come up with that one.

Funny, but I don’t remember this season of my life.  But, it does sound like something I would do.  Chances are, some boy commented on my laugh, and I decided to change it.  I’m not sure how one would go about actually changing a laugh.  I guess you would have to study other people’s laughs, and pick one you like.  Then, you’d have to practice.  A lot.  Sounds like a lot of work.

In college, I did try to smile differently.  Talk about weird.  I’ve always thought my smile was way too wide.  And, considering how often I laugh and smile, this is serious business.  My eyes actually squeeze shut when I am really smiling.  I got my Senior picture taken and the woman told me, (no lie), “Oh, my.  We have a problem.  Your eyes close when you smile.  Try to keep them open.”  How do you keep your eyes open?  Well, I raised my eyebrows.  As was apparent on the prints.  OH MY GOSH!  I looked like some kind of crazy, scary clown.  Go in and try it in the mirror.  Smile nice and wide while raising your eyebrows.  Scary, huh?

So, a girl on my dorm floor had this interesting smile.  She kind of frowned.  I thought that was pretty cool and tried it out a couple of times.  Didn’t take.  Decided that the best thing was to not smile quite as much as normal when taking pictures, and at least whenever I saw myself smiling, it wouldn’t look so bad.  Does anyone wonder why I’m therapy?

Looks like my attempts at trying to reinvent myself failed.  But, instead of thinking of it as failure, I am opting for deciding to accept myself as the way God made me.  And, He had a plan in mind when he formed Michelle.  The Great Architect put together a unique individual.  But, in this instance, I think unique is a wonderful word!

Smile and Say Ahhhh!

Trip #2 to the dentist today.  I wasn’t nervous or anxious at all.  Until I couldn’t find my mp3 player.  Panic-stricken, I announced to the family that I couldn’t find it.  Everyone scrambled to look for it, and suggest places to look.  Well, everyone except my daughter.  She was too busy watching “Camp Rock” online.  God bless my husband.  He found it on the dining room table.  Whew!

When I went in, the hygienist was so super sweet, as usual.  I showed her that I was ready with my mp3 player and she laughed and said, “I brought mine just in case your forgot yours.”  Now how sweet was that?  Very little “eeeeeeeeeeeeeeEEEEEEEEEEeeeeeeeeeeee” tools were used.  Just a lot of scraping.  (After 10+ years, I would expect that)

Once she was finished, I kept running my tongue along my teeth.  What a great feeling that was!  I put off eating lunch as long as I could so I could keep that feeling.

I’m going back in January and I am actually looking forward to it.  I know it will be a much better experience then, especially since this one wasn’t so bad!

I know that I read somewhere that dentists have the highest rate of suicide in all professions.  I think that is sad.  So be sure and thank your dentist next time, or at least smile at him.  Unless you are numb.  Then, just give him a thumbs up.  Your smiling would just be weird with that trickle of drool coming out of your mouth that you can’t even feel.

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