"Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy."
~Thich Nhat Hanh
This week I have been working on understanding why some people dislike when others overtly show happiness or smile a little extra. Imagine when one is having a “feel good party” mentally singing to some “feel good” songs and forgets that people around don’t “feel that good”. Yes, this happened to me. I was bluntly asked “why do you always smile?” “I don’t understand why you do that. It makes me mad”. CRACK shattered my mental record player and I paused to think – fight or flight. I decided to fight, by this I mean I went into a brief explanation of “I feel good today after a rough week dealing with my back pain… I’m glad I am pain free for now”.
As far as I can remember I have been known for my smiley face. People at times tell me my smile changes the way they feel about themselves (by this I mean positive J ). Why do I smile so much? I smile when I am genuinely happy, when I overcome a difficult situation and sometimes I smile because someone needs it. Do I smile all the time? Heck no. If I did smile all the time then I would be either smoking pot (to escape reality) or living in the “Loony Toon world” (I wished I had, sometimes this world gets too mean and/or too serious for me).
Discovering there are some who are bothered by my smile, I don’t know if I am offended or sad. Ever since, I have been wondering whether I should smile less knowing how some feel about it and I keep coming to the conclusion - How can I? Since I truly believe the Universe has given me the ability to smile for a purpose beyond my knowledge, in addition to many a times taking away my chronic back pain, reducing my stress level, and helping me win my mental battles – There’s MAGIC in my SMILE J and I am grateful I have one.
I know I like to “smile”. How about you? Have you ever wondered what does a ‘Smile’ mean to you? What does a “Smile” do for you? If you don’t have an answer check the links below maybe this could help you think.
As for me, for the past 8 years my SKYPE status has been “Always Smiling”
- I have no intentions to change it!
Baker, J (2014). What Does Your Smile Say About You? WebMD.
Body Language: What’s Really Behind a Smile? (2014)
10 Hidden Benefits of Smiling (2014) PSYBLOG: Understand your mind
"I look upon death to be as necessary to the constitution as sleep. We shall rise refreshed in the morning."
~ Benjamin Franklin
On this day, 12 years ago I lost my dad to pancreatic cancer. Although losing him was rough I gained an enlightened prospective of human spirit and its journey. Ever since I have been reading, discussing, searching, and researching stories and evidence of life after death, to my delight I have been successful. Not only had I the wonderful firsthand experience in helping family and friends in making a transition into the spirit world but I have on several occasions (after the count of 10 I let it rest) helped total strangers.
I am often asked how I do all the things I do and why I do what I do? After asking myself these questions I feel I do not have a concrete answer because my human mind still cannot wrap itself around the concept of how immense Spirit is. As I write this journal I am realizing that Spirit cannot be found in a book or its pages because it is so freaking enormous that it cannot be contained. Neither can Spirit be captured in a though because it is faster than lightening (any genuine person who has this experience will vouch for that). The only thing that lingers longer than a thought, sight, dream or book is the “feeling” of a Spirit, good or bad (trust me there are some that still don’t get it, even after death). Why do I do it? Let me share some stories.
This happened five years ago… I kept seeing a man in my house, in the beginning he was lighter and as days and weeks passed by be got stronger and I would see him in my kitchen and sometimes living room. Thinking he is an “impression” or someone “passing” spirit I would simply ignore him and continue to whatever I was doing then. Until one day when he walked right into my bathroom when I was talking to my husband in the most private and intimate spot of my house and stood next to him. This time the man was “solid” and he startled me. Not realizing my husband cannot see him I said aloud “what are you doing here and who the heck are you?” Of course by now my husband was startled to hear me say those words. He looked at me with his usual half- amused-smile (the one I fell in love with the first time I met him) and said, “Well I am your hus….” And I said “not you, him!”. Then I described the man to my husband and he as a matter of fact said “that’s my daddy… is he here?” I had never met my father-in-law when he was alive because he had died of cirrhosis of the liver when my husband was 6 years old. Realizing the next day was his 36th death anniversary (which we had almost forgotten until his assertive appearance in our bathroom that night) my husband got emotional. After that my father-in-law stayed with me for a while as I worked with him to communicate his feelings of regret and love as he asked for forgiveness and healing from each of his family members (had to make several international calls too). My beloved father-in-law taught me the importance of healing the spirit in order to move on to his next spirit journey – something like a 12 steps program (he was an alcoholic) in the spirit world, one of which was him resolving his earthly unfinished business.
This happened two years ago…. I was at the salon getting my hair done and as my stylist, the ever so talented Cole, was multitasking my eyes happened to wonder around. Through the mirror I saw an elderly woman sitting on a chair and next to her was an elderly man. We were discussing relationships and I happened to mention how nice it felt to see an elderly couple hanging out together, even better was to see the man patiently waited for the woman as she got her hair done. Looking at Cole’s expression through the mirror as she froze on me (Cole has always been encouraging and accepting of my gift and has helped me grow in ways I can’t imagine) I went “oh oh”. She leaves me in mid-sentence with my hair clipped up in a comical way and comes back with the elderly lady and says “Caroline, tell her what you just told me” thinking Cole has temporally lost her mind I looked at her embarrassed but she was persistent. So I told the woman what I saw. That poor woman choked and gasped right in front of me and literally broke down in tears and pain. She held to her chest and said, “That’s my husband you’re talking about … I can’t believe it”. For a split second I didn’t know what was happening. I looked over for the elderly man and I didn’t see him (this time directly and not through the mirror). I was then told by Cole that she had lost her husband in a car wreck a week ago. Then the message flowed … he was trying to console his wife and himself trying to make sense of all that has happened within the past week. He explained to her that he didn’t feel much pain when he had a heart attack while driving his car (which I was told later that caused the wreck). He expressed how he feels leaving her with no explanations to all the questions she had. After a few minutes (which felt like forever to me) he encouraged her to attend their grand daughter’s wedding and shared some private feelings before he said goodbye. This incident taught me the power of love and companionship and the importance of saying goodbyes for closure. The husband placed his spirit journey on hold so that he could help his wife begin the grieving process. Both tried to make sense of what happened. Understanding their human journey together has ended and their new separate journey lies ahead they both attempted to say their loving goodbyes in the presence of all those in the salon, including the bride to be.
“Seeing death as the end of life is like seeing the horizon as the end of the ocean.”
~ David Searls
Hot cup of coffee, open windows, cool October breeze; Dewey, my identity confused dog who thinks he is a human most of the time, sitting on a chair next to me, children lazing in bed …what a beautiful morning. Fresh with a clear morning mind and brilliant concepts I sit with my laptop intending to begin another research. Then it begins, clicking on one link, then another and another and another…. Suddenly I realize “oh geez my research...where was I?” Nada! Nothing! Zero!
After a couple of deep clearing breathes and composing myself I did a brief synopsis of my disappointing time wasting moments. Then did I realized, I did learn about Jennifer Garner’s proud confession of having a ‘baby bump’ after giving birth to three kids (discussing body image), Johnny Depp talking about being an introvert (personality types), watching a video on “A breakthrough in social and emotional learning” (emotional needs) and some FB catching up (social interest) I actually did part of my research! Now I have a new thesis!
“Lifestyles of personality types and the impact of emotional and social interest on physical and mental wellbeing.”
What I have learned with this experience is the power of “Intention”. I started with an intention for a research and unconsciously ended up completing what I initially set out to do. Imagine how deep and mysteriously our mind works and the brain that constantly keeps up to our inner thoughts and expectations. Imagine how beneficial all this can be if we consciously apply our thought process towards achieving something positive, creative and fulfilling. If well applied we will not only be able to achieve our individual goals but in fact be able to reach out to others in our community and help them set their goals too.
Edutopia (2014). A Breakthrough in Social and Emotional Learning. http://www.edutopia.org/louisville-sel-video
Caroline Fernandes is a certified hypnotherapist, holistic wellness life coach, Reiki master and an integrative psychotherapist. She specializes in energy psychology and conducts international workshops on integrating Eastern holistic healing methods in psychotherapy. She is a blogger and a published author contributor in ‘Spirituality and Human Psyche’. She is available for consultation on metaphysical, spiritual, dream analysis, & intuitive matters.