A simple smile can give someone a feeling of existence.
If there is only one thing I take away from this project it is the importance of smiling. Where can I start with this simple revelation? The surprising fact that smiling makes me feel better in myself, AND I know that it helps smooth the way with the first interaction with strangers or new circumstances. But the most important thing I have experienced is that the simple act of smiling validates someone’s existence. Smilling at someone who is homeless on the street, for example, someone who so many people step over, does two things: it confirms in my mind’s eye the existence of someone who is marginal; and it says to them: “I see you, you exist for me, you are not invisible”.
When two people find themselves smiling with each other it is powerful stuff.