INKtober tenth

sometimes
i feel like
no matter how hard
i try to be
a good person
try to do things
right
no matter what
i am doomed
to failure
&
i’m really trying
that’s the thing
being a good
person
is important
to me
so these
suspicions
that i am
fucking
it
all
up
anyway
are especially
devastating.

it was suggested by a beloved follower that my self-portraits could maybe smile. i couldn’t think up a smart ass response…so i drew one.

i used to smile constantly. i have extreme social anxiety & smiling was my way of satisfying the hordes that could not understand how terrified i was of small talk & social interactions. plus, being a girl in this culture, i was told to “smile” every time i did not smile. so i was one big explosion of smiles.
i remember one snarky girl at a party i was at when i was in my early 20s–i happened to be dating the guy she desired…but did not know that at the time–saying loudly, “does she do anything other than smile?”

death, single motherhood, betrayal, & heartache seriously dampened my smile. i sometimes find it extremely difficult to smile, in fact. sometimes smiling makes me cry.

but sometimes an authentic smile burbles up.
sometimes.

meanwhile. this is me. this is the smile i can muster without crying, too much.

constructive criticisms from a soon-to-be five year old who was watching over my shoulder as i drew this…
“you look nothing like her.”
“you’re not even trying.”

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