I am so thankful that God invented laughter. I love to laugh, sometimes maybe too much, and sometimes at the wrong time, but laughter is so refreshing to me. Recently, we had friends over and we played games and laughed hard. Sometimes you do not realize how much you need a good laugh. This evening was that reminder to me at how long it had been since I had had a “good” laugh. Laughter for me releases the pent up stress, and helps me to see better. I felt so much lighter and refreshed after my time with our friends.
The daily challenge was, “a silly memory” you are thankful for. It was fun to think about many different times were I just laughed with people, and laughed hard. Sometimes because my brain kicked out, and then I did or said something that was way off, and we just laughed, or someone said something that was either so outlandish, or odd, or unexpected, either on purpose, or by accident, it really did not matter, we laughed either way. I was thinking of these stories that make me laugh every time I think of them, and how I would share one. This was challenging, not merely because of the challenge of picking just one, but more because “you had to be there.” You may find it funny after I did much explaining, but if you were not there it is hard to see why something is so funny.
This got me thinking about how much laughter really is a relationship gift. It is something that is shared, usually by a few and connects them deeper. Even when I think of some of my favorite comedians, I think of the jokes and stories they tell and they are funny because I can so relate to a piece of it and then I share it with someone who will get it because they have shared the same experience or they have been through the same thing or reacted the same way. The more universal the experience the funnier it becomes.
Laughter is also a gift that can break the ice in a situation, or add a layer of comfort to a very difficult situation. I was at a funeral recently and people were sharing some funny stories about the man who had died. There was comfort in remembering and laughing. There were still tears, and the hurt and ache was still deep but it was a breath of fresh air in a hard situation.
I love being around kids, besides the fact that they think I am funny unlike some others in my life who do not find my jokes as funny. They love to laugh. You can tell the same joke about them “losing their teeth” and where did they lose them? and they will laugh. You can say absurd things, and they will crack up, and let you know how silly you are. They see the silly and absurd and enjoy the laughter. Kids go through the joke stage, and the knock, knock jokes, and the clever puns stages. They become obsessed students of funny and laughter. I remember one of my sons would watch me laugh, and when he did not get it, he would ask why I was laughing. He wanted to be in on it. My other son saw me laughing at a show we would listen to that had a good deal of sarcasm, even though it was a kid show, a bonus for the adults listening. He picked up on the fact that those parts made me laugh and became very gifted at saying the “right” sarcastic comment at the “proper” time. Which was funny and not, since he was three and sometimes he would add it to times when others may not think it was funny for a three year old to be sarcastic. Needless to say we took a break from that show.
Laughter is something that has helped connect in some harder seasons of parenting. A friend shared some very funny videos with us back in that season, and then that became our tradition of watching and laughing together. It definitely bridged the gap and got us through. We would end up having a lot of inside jokes with each other because we shared those laughs. Even now we love to watch some videos and comedians or funny shows because we enjoy laughing together.
Sometimes I forget that God invented laughter. He gives it as a gift. He gets it and gives it. He did not have to give us a sense of humor but He did. I am so thankful for laughter and fun, especially those silly moments where something reminds you of it and you start laughing all over again, just thinking about it. Those moments where you do not even remember why you started laughing in the beginning but now you cannot stop, are treasures. I am thankful for people who laugh easy. My favorite people are those who can go deep, and then go silly within a matter of moments. Those people make life a bit better and are part of some of my favorite memories.