smile though your heart is aching

Seriously, Chicago, what the heck is wrong with you people? 

Okay, I guess I should explain where I’m coming from.  First, it’s no surprise, I’m having a rough time right now.  I’ve been in a funk for over a week now and work has been extremely sucky- especially these past two days.  So in saying this, I’m fine with admitting that I am not the most happy, ‘life is beautiful’ person in this city, but in comparison to the people I came across today I am far from the most miserable.  Now this is unfortunately not an exaggeration, but also not a completely accurate representation either; however, it’s what I observed.

Beginning with this morning’s commute, I started to notice how glum people looked.  In the 75 minutes that it took me to get to work this morning, the ONLY smiles that I witnessed were from the people that worked at the Skokie Swift’s Starbucks.  That’s ridiculous!  I mean I’m in a shitastic mood these days and I still smiled AND THANKED the guy who gives me the Red Eye every morning, all of my lovely Starbucks’ baristas, the Starbucks’ employee that held the door open for me, and the bus driver…all before I even got to work at 8 am CT.

I witnessed a few more smiles during the rest of the day, but in comparison to the hundreds of people I pass every day this number is disappointing.  On the way home/ to Karrie’s apartment this evening, I swear people were making an effort to increase my funk by being extremely gloomy themselves.  I promise I’m not exaggeration.  The only laughter I heard was from these two teenage girls trying to get to the last car before the train doors closed. 

That brings up another frustration of mine.   Why don’t people say thank you anymore?   Where the heck did people’s manners go?   And is there such a thing as chivalry in our society today?  It’s so frustrating for me because, for anyone who knows me I can’t not hold the door hope for everyone, say godblessyou to anyone that sneezes, nor let people go ahead of me in the grocery store line if they have 3 items to my 10.  (Yeah, I know ridiculous…but this is me.)

You know it’s sad because since living here, well at least in the past couple of months, I’ve come not to expect much from people.  I cannot begin to tell you how many doors have slammed shut in my face- on the train, at Starbucks, grocery stores- and don’t get me started to the doors I’ve met on Michigan Avenue. 

No matter how down, upset, frustrated, etc. I feel, I still smile.  Why not?  But you know sometimes I feel like other people’s moods affect me more than I want to admt…even in my office.  To be honest, out of the 3 others in the office today, I only recall one really smiling.  As Karrie said today during our after-work hangout session, “Maybe it’s Skokie.”  I hope so because otherwise I’m starting to wonder if it’s just me. 

Anyways, just wanted to share something with you.  My dad played this for me a few years ago, actually when I was going through a rough period.  I just remember staring out the car window with tears building up in my eyes.  But now I listen to this song and it reminds me to just smile and remember that things will (eventually) be okay.  I hope that you enjoy it as much as I do.  Smile- Chris Botti & Steven Tyler

Good morning, everyone.  I hope that tomorrow is a brighter day for us all.  At least that’s partially true with the weather being in the 70s. ♥ K


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