#smilelikeeric

This hashtag seems like such a simple idea and it is. But there is a little story behind it.

The morning Eric died when the wild frenzy of preparation for the days to come was underway, some of us were sitting at the counter looking through photos. In each photo, there was a familiar, comforting and contagious smile upon Eric’s face. The type of grin you cannot help but smile back. The sort of smile the improves the mood of the day. The expression that quickly became a memory and now we find some comfort in the images ranging from when Eric was young until meere days before his last. Someone said, “he had a great smile…”

#smilelikeeric was written on a chalkboard in the kitchen and it was there for weeks. Since that day it has been used almost 1000 times on social media and has been put on bracelets and on shirts. It is a reminder to share the most basic of gestures, a smile.

Since then it has grown to take on more meaning. Eric would end most texts with an old ๐Ÿ™‚ smile. Not the emoji smile or anything fancy, but simply :). The tone of the message did not matter, because each time it would end with :). And this supported the #smilelikeeric hashtag further.

The smile. Eric’s smile. A smile we miss. A smile we are grateful was shared.

๐Ÿ™‚