June 30th, 2011
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When was the last time you had a really good laugh?
I’m talking about the kind of laughter that comes from way down deep; when you can’t catch your breath or you accidentally spit out whatever you are eating or drinking because you can’t contain the laughter anymore and you have to let it out.

Spontaneous, out loud laughter that is contagious and blows the stress out of your system.  That’s what I’m talking about.

Doctors say laughter is great for your health because it reduces stress and strengthens your immune system….and who cares whether you have health insurance or not because you don’t need a prescription for laughter!

Having a sense of humor is so important because it brings lightness and wit into your life.  It’s as if you are pushing all of the incredibly serious, headache-producing, adult matters happening in your life off a cliff that is labeled “HAD ENOUGH” and you are momentarily free.

I know it’s hard because I have to constantly remind myself but instead of focusing on the negative aspects of a situation, try to see the lighter side.  You can always share a story with a friend or office mate about something embarrassing you did or imitate yourself to your friends; that’s sure to get a laugh!  I do it a lot because there’s always an unending number of ridiculous things I do every day.  You gotta laugh!

You may think it feels wrong to laugh while you are grieving but it’s really okay.  Humor is healing.  At first, you’re going to feel really uncomfortable about smiling or laughing, as though you are doing something awful or sacrilegious.  You’ll probably be thinking that you shouldn’t be having a good time because someone you loved very much just died and people will think their death didn’t mean anything to you if they see you smiling or laughing.  Not true.  If your mood is serious and thoughtful then go with it, but if a funny memory pops into your head then enjoy that too.
Remembering the funny things your loved one said or did is one of the many ways we can honor the memory of those we loved and cared about.  It keeps them close and alive in our hearts.  Your laughter may lead to tears but that’s okay too.  It’s your journey and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
One of the stories that my family likes to share about my husband has to do with his devotion to the NY Giants.  My husband LOVED, LOVED, LOVED the NY Giants.  You would have thought it was his very own football team.

When the Giants earned the right to go to the Super Bowl in 1991, my brothers and brothers-in-law (who are all die hard Redskins fans) bought my husband a lamp that had a Giants football helmet on its base as a celebration gift.  He thought it was beautiful!  However, when the Redskins went to the Super Bowl in 1992, my husband didn’t get anything for any of them.  There was absolutely no reciprosity.  “Aren’t you going to buy them a Super Bowl present?,” I asked him.  Without hesitation, he said, “No way.  I am not spending one cent of my money on anything that is burgandy and gold.”

What are your stories?  We’re all in this together, so thanks for sharing :)!

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