Behind the Smile by Dr. Arthur Caliandro
Posted on March 16, 2008 by Arthur Caliandro

The other morning, while riding down on the elevator (I am always amazed how much conversation can happen on an elevator ride), a woman who always has a happy countenance got on. To match her upbeat manner, whenever I see her I greet her with a hearty, “Good morning. It’s good to see you. You lift my spirits.”

This time she said to me that although she always tries to present a cheery face, “the tears come down anyway.” With her index fingers she touched her eyes and followed a path down her cheekbones toward her neck. At that point the elevator got to the lobby and we got off and went our separate ways.

As I walked away I carried with me the realization that so often behind our smiles and seemingly upbeat spirits there is a sadness and a disappointment, loneliness or loss.

To me this means we are wisest and most helpful when we show kindness and compassion to everybody. You never know how much of a tough battle other people are facing.


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