A merry heart does good, like medicine. --Proverbs 17:22
my best girlfriend Marian struggled to find her way after her husband’s death,
she investigated several new activities that she hoped would re-channel her
grief. One of those is called Laughter
Yoga. The premise is that laughter frees something inside you, even if – in
the beginning at least – it isn’t heartfelt because the body can’t differentiate
between humorous and forced laughter.
should try it,” Marian told me. “It’s unbelievably therapeutic to just laugh
for no reason at all!”
Sure it is, I
But a few weeks later, while facing one of the most stressful days I’d
faced in a while, I sat at a stoplight, deep-breathing. Marian’s words came to
mind. In one of those desperate-enough-to-even-try-this
moments, I decided to give it a shot. With the windows clamped shut and the
radio cranked up, I let out one good hardy laugh. After pausing in hope of the
outcome she’d suggested, I tried it again – this time, louder. And hardier.
about the time that a small sense of relief actually did creep up on me, I
glanced over at the car next to me where the driver gawked with pure, unabashed
judgment. As our eyes met, she cocked her head and raised an eyebrow as if
she’d caught me picking my nose.
When the light turned green, she shook her
head and drove away, and – for some
reason – the situation struck me as hilariously funny. I guffawed and snorted
at myself all the way home.
told you so!” Marian cried that evening when I called to recount my experience
and blame her for my embarrassment.
And then the laughter came again, the best
kind, the kind you can only share with your closest friend. I’m guessing it was
no great miracle that I slept like a baby that night, waking up in the morning
to the realization that a merry heart really is like medicine.
Father, for the joy of laughter, especially when it’s shared with a friend.
* * *
an entertainment publicist in Los Angeles for 15+ years. She is now a
best-selling, award-winning author of laugh-out-loud fiction for the
inspirational market. As an ovarian cancer survivor, she gears time and effort
toward raising awareness and funds for research, diagnostics and a cure. Her
latest novel, Book #3 of 4 in the Another Emma Rae Creation series for Abingdon
Press, is Always the Designer, Never the Bride. Sandie invites every reader to
click the FOLLOW button on her newly-redesigned BLOG and
contribute to the ongoing conversations.