One Smile At A Time

Sandra - Orchard Park, New York
Entered on February 28, 2008
Age Group: Under 18
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I wake up, and turn on the TV. The news channel is on from when my parents went to bed last night. I sit down for a moment. Who knows, maybe something interesting has happened since I’ve gone to bed. I watch for about ten minutes, and all that I receive for my time is disappointment. More soldiers have been killed in Iraq, more Americans are loosing their jobs, more immigrants seeking sanctuary are rejected, and gas prices have no signs of falling. A clip of our nation’s leader appears on the screen. I’ve seen enough. Immediately, I turn the television off. I don’t want to start off my day being stressed and depressed due to what our world and nation is becoming. “I want to change that”, I say to my cat, Shadow, as I walk out the door. “You watch…I will.” She looks at me for a second, and continues playing with my brother’s shoelace.

I arrive at school. Couples arguing and teachers giving out punishments greet me almost as soon as I walk in the door. Great, more stress. But I won’t allow myself to be negative just because they are.

Later in the day, I stop and talk to one of my friends. She tells me that I am far too calm, too optimistic for a school day. I shrug. “I see no reason to be upset. This place would be so much better if more people smiled.” I say, and continue our conversation. As we talk, I see a change. She is no longer frowning and complaining, but smiling and laughing. As we are about to head off to our classes, she tells me that I’ve made her day. I give her a puzzled look, and she shrugs, saying “This place would be so much better if everyone smiled.”, and with that, she walked away.

I smile to myself. I’ve changed one person for the better. Tomorrow, maybe it will be someone else. I can make a difference in the world, one smile at a time. This I believe.