Smile (children’s focus 11-13-16)

by Joanne Dingus

Smile though your heart is aching. Smile even though it’s breaking. When there are clouds in the sky, you’ll get by. If you smile through your fear and sorrow. Smile and maybe tomorrow you’ll see the sun coming shining through for you. Lift up your face with gladness. Hide every trace of sadness. Although a tear may be ever so near. That’s the time you must keep on trying. Smile, what’s the use of crying? You’ll find that life is still worth-while, if you just smile.

– Lyrics by Charlie Chaplan

 

The day after the election I was feeling pretty upset, exhausted and even depressed. I went to the school to do my crossing guard job and one little boy smiled at me and yelled, “Hey Miss Joanne, did you here? Trump, Trump, Trump!”

And without even think I said, “Yes I heard and I’m sorry for that.” And then I somehow kept myself from crying and forced a smile on my face for the rest of my shift. Because it’s my job to smile and greet the children. But more than that, I love the children at Mt. Vernon and I don’t want that to change because of an election. After all, the children didn’t vote.

So, I spent the next few days figuring out what I wanted to say to you, the children at UUFP.

What do you need to know? Well, you need to know that you are loved. You need to know that the adults in your life will work hard to keep you safe and help you when you need help. You also need to know that you have an important role. If you see someone being bullied. You need to speak up. If someone bullies you, you need to speak up, tell an adult.

You need to surround yourselves with friends who build you up and make you feel good about yourself. And you need to be that friend to others.

I love the sound of the song, Smile but there are a couple things wrong with it. Yes, putting on a smile can help you feel better sometimes and make the people around you feel better sometimes. There are times when you may want to muster up extra courage and smile through a situation.

But there are also times when you should not hide your sadness. The song asks, what’s the use in crying? Well, sometimes crying helps you to get your feelings out. When you’re done, you feel better. Crying is also a signal to others that you’re sad or angry or need help. So, crying can be very important.

After we head to our classes, the adults here this morning are going to get a chance to share their feelings about the election. So, I want to ask you, how are you feeling this week? How are your parents doing? If you don’t know, it’s okay to ask them? And how about your friends, how are they doing?

In times like these, we need to check in with each other and we need to listen to each other. Remember it’s up to us to speak up for ourselves and others and that our tears and smiles are important ways to show how we feel.

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One Response to Smile (children’s focus 11-13-16)

  1. Lehni says:

    Joanne, it was a beautiful and loving message. Thank you.

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