I have smiled while explaining that I was perfectly happy with how things were at home and I loved every minute our girlfriend was around. I have smiled while lies of equality spill from my lips, leaving them numb.
I have smiled while fighting back tears because once again I'm just not that important to him and his time with me has been postponed one more time. I smile as I talk to him on the phone to keep people who work with me from seeing how my heart is breaking yet again. I smile as I lie and say everything is fine.
Like any other I have worn masks to hide and distract from my inner pain. I have painted a smile onto my face and worn it to keep the painful questions at bay. Yet, I now have an experience that blows all those away like a spring breeze at the end of winter. And it starts with a smile.
It started with his smile every time he visited me. A smile would break across his face like the morning sun every time his eyes drank me in. His smiles warmed me and taught me how love is supposed to feel. Each night he comes home his emotions and happiness take over his face and burst forth in a smile as he holds me close and kisses me. Each morning he wakes me with a smile, promising me yet another day wrapped in the safety of his love.
A year ago I smiled as I listened to him fumble for the words to explain how happy I made him as we sat at a small table in a sushi restaurant. I smiled as I realized he was finally getting around to what we'd talked about for months. I smiled as he struggled with his fear of me answering negatively. I smiled as he presented the ring to me and that was all the answer he really needed.
Less than two months ago I smiled as friends and family began gathering at our home to engage in the light buzz of activity before we set out for our destination. I smile when my dad hugs me and says he is glad to be here with me. I smile as I do my hair and make-up, not a single nervous twitch to mar my happiness. I sequestered myself away to slip into my dress and adorn myself with so many sparkling jewels I feel like a princess. I smile as I ask my dad to secure the clasp of my necklace. His smile when I turn to face him says it all. I am beautiful in his eyes and he is delighted to see me this happy. I am thrilled beyond measure that I have this moment with him.
We begin our walk down the isle and there are smiles all around us. Our friends and family have come to witness this turning point, this merging of the paths we walk down. But the smile that means the most of all is the one waiting for me at the end of our walk. This man I love and adore is so delighted to see me, to know that he'll have me by his side for the rest of his life, that I'm surprised it doesn't pour forth in a wave of brightly colored rainbow happiness to cover us all. Instead he smiles and reaches for my hand.
Finally, I have reached a time in my life where the smiles are true, where they light up the eyes of the one presenting them. The smiles these days come from the heart and hide no pain. The smiles now filling my life come from happiness, love, and delight. He still smiles every night when he comes home, happy to once more have me in his arms. He smiles at my antics and his laughter is the finest symphony this would could ever create in my ears.
Description: Lynn and I after the ceremony, he wears a black suit with a bright blue shirt, I wear a purple dress. We are turned toward each other, my head on his shoulder, his cheek pressed against my forehead, both of us unaware of the camera, both wearing smiles of utter happiness and contentment.
Photo taken by zhent