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Smiling with Teeth!

Photo: The Mirror Has Two Faces
by Gina Yap (6-26-05)

“For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”–Psalm 139:13-14

Late last year, a friend embarked on a personal crusade, the “Make-Jenny-Smile-With-Teeth” Project. This he decided upon after noticing that I didn’t like showing my teeth when I’d smile for the camera. Growing up, I never liked the way my teeth looked. Braces did help straighten out that problem but subconsciously I was still stuck in that pre-braces image of me and my smile. That’s why I don’t grin when being photographed.

When Mega Magazine gave me a make-over for my 27th birthday 4 years ago, fashion editor Vicky Tensuan also egged me to show my teeth during the photoshoot. I obliged for the first few shots, but told her immediately that I was not comfortable smiling with teeth. The photographer agreed with me and they ended up publishing a picture of me smiling without the teeth. That all the more validated my no-toothy-grin policy.

The smart guy that he is, what my friend did was to take candid shots of me when I am at my happiest and wackiest. And viola! He came up with photos of Jenny smiling with teeth. When he emailed me all the pictures some months ago, I didn’t even dare look. I told him that this is one project he will surely fail at.

After seeing our Boracay pictures, though, I think I am beginning to see the light. (We were all grinning like crazy and looking oh-so-radiant while enjoying the splendor of the place.) I am learning to smile with teeth and liking the way I look.

I realize now that there is more to the project than just teaching me how to smile with teeth, my friend was actually trying to teach me to accept and love myself more. Thank God for friends like that! Here’s smiling back at you with teeth, Carl!

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  1. A smile is a light in the window of the soul indicating that the heart is at home. – UNKNOWN

    God made you the way you are, I’m glad you’re learning to be at home with that. 🙂 All your friends know what a wonderful person you are inside. See that fact for yourself and it will shine even brighter, just like your smile. 🙂

  2. hi jenny,

    keep on smiling!Ü

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