Laughter is the Best Medicine

It’s true what they say that laughter is the best medicine. Today I had the distinct privilege of spending my Sunday morning in an after-hours clinic because of a stabbing headache that has lasted 3 days (and counting). I thought it might be due to an ear infection, otherwise I might have toughed it out. But I was fully prepared, upon leaving the clinic with no helpful news, to embark upon my terrible day full of head pain and crabbiness and exhaustion. Thankfully my boys had other plans. Jonathan took a sick day so he could take care of Aiden while I went to the doctor and he managed to wash, fold, and put away all the laundry and do the dishes while I played with Aiden, took a nap and read my book. Yes, I am a lucky woman. And we both discovered (again) that there is nothing quite like the laughter of a child to make you forget your woes. Aiden was in a remarkable mood and was constantly finding something to giggle about. Like pretending that dozens of kitties were coming out of the tiny box in his hand and tickling us with their tongues. Or spinning in circles till he collapsed on the floor and watched the room spin out of the corner of his eye. Later, because we were all getting cabin fever, and I wasn’t about to cook, we picked up some supper and went to the park.  There was a storm brewing and it was gloriously breezy for such a hot afternoon.  Aiden tromped around the park barefoot, in true boy fashion, and laughed at everything he saw. And not just little laughs. These were full-faced, throw your head back kind of laughs that were absolutely infectious. 

As we drove home, Aiden requested his favorite music, an album of high quality children’s bluegrass by David Holt. And, as always, he requested his favorite track, “I Got A Bullfrog,” which is a musical blooper of epic proportion consisting of at least 30 seconds of laughter that the singer is trying desperately and unsuccessfully to get under control. I LOVE that they left this “mistake” in the recording. Every time it comes on Aiden grins from ear to ear in the back seat and laughs along.  I can’t help but join him no matter how many times I have heard it. 

At home, after supper, I let him have a piece of cake and after every bite, he wriggled with glee, doing an excited little cake dance while he . . . you guessed it . . . laughed.  By the end of the day as I felt the piercing pains in my head again, I realized that although the pain had persisted all day, I had not thought about it in hours.  It had not dominated my day as I had feared it would.  And I had laughter to thank. I wonder how much healthier, and of course happier, we would all be if we learned to be a bit more light-hearted and laugh a lot more readily.

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