Looking for Laughter

Is there anything about that might elicit some laughter here?

I would love to die laughing, the way I heard my old friend, Jesse, died.  His wife said he was sitting in his easy chair one afternoon, which was about all he ever did anymore.  She was sitting in the other chair, in their small living room, and she heard him laugh.  She said, “Jesse, what’s so funny?”  He did not answer.  She got up and approached him, just a couple of feet away, and stood in front of him, studying his face.  He was sitting there, not moving, with a smile on his face, as he had just laughed.  He said not a word.  She studied him for a second and realized he was gone!  “Just like that,” she told me.  “He died laughing!  One minute he was with me, we were sitting, keeping each other company, and then the next thing I knew, he laughed out loud and then was gone!”

I cannot think of anything funny!  I remember times in my past that were hilarious but right now, I see little that is funny.  I see a lot of irony, but it does not make me want to laugh uncontrollably.  How do the comedians do it?  Is there a workshop one can attend, where one learns how to recognize humor, make others laugh?  I would love to go to one of these workshops!

This morning, as I got up, I felt something in the back of my throat.  I thought, “Oh God, now I’ve done it!  I should have quit smoking when the doctor told me to.  There is something materializing on my tongue at the back of my throat!”  I held the magnifying mirror in my right hand, and with the other, held my flashlight and peered down into my mouth.  Something bluish, purplish was on my tongue, so I reached down my throat with my finger, quite alarmed, and scraped at this foreign something.  I retrieved a tiny piece of wooly scrap, the same color of the wooly afghan I sometimes wrap about my head at night in order to keep in the warmth.  I must have breathed in this tiny piece of wool a couple of nights previous, the last time I slept with that afghan.  What a relief!  I need not worry.  I wondered what else I might be breathing in as I sleep.

I sigh.  This morning I woke up suddenly at 4:30, my mind on a client I see daily, just for an hour.  She is a lovely young woman who is convinced she is ill, even though I can see she still has much strength in her body.  She may well be ill, but she does not appear ill.  Her doctor has not diagnosed whatever it is she has.  In the depths of my being, I feel she is anxious.  Her fear and anxiety are making her ill.  I know how this can happen.

I have been so fearful that I have had no energy to do anything.  Feeling so trapped, so alone, I have gone to bed at night, gotten up in the morning only to find my way back to my bed.  Entire days go by sometimes, where I feel as though I have no purpose in being here.  I ride it out, sometimes writing to myself, trying to pinpoint why I have these feelings of desolation.  It has been so pervasive in my life that feeling this bad is like a sorry habit, much like smoking.

I have a good library, so usually what pulls me out of this space in my head is a book.  I will take one I have yet to read, open it up randomly, and read the first paragraph my eyes see.  Time after time, the words jump out at me.  They bring me to the present, just in a short sentence.  Either many of my books are the self-help ones, “channeled,” or written by someone I have heard “knows” the truth.  Some of the ideas have sunk in.

One of these ideas is that we are not victims.  The suggestion is that we can be in alignment with a source of infinite power and creativity.  By searching deeply within ourselves, we may see that we truly have nothing to fear.  These ideas challenge one to take personal responsibility for one’s state of mind, to accept it, and to be aware of the habitual thought patterns.  We may learn to recognize those that are fear based, release them, cancel them, and think of something better with which to replace them.  If we speak positive words, we affect our present, our now.  This is probably the power of the mantra, the affirmation, or even prayer.

I still have some time to be here, most likely.  I wish to be of use, but I cannot help anyone that does not ask for my assistance.  I must not impose on another how I see things.  Each is on his or her own journey of whatever it is they must do in this life.  When I see another suffering, my natural inclination is to wish to heal them, but it is not my place.  Another’s suffering is something they must struggle with in order to transcend it, to find their own truth and freedom.

The only problem with another’s suffering is that those around the one in pain are obliged to be patient, compassionate, and unconditionally loving, which can be a challenge for most of us.   My natural tendency is to mirror back what I pick up from another, but I see this is not necessarily very helpful.  Thus, I wake up out of my sleep disturbed, not knowing that I can keep from overstepping the boundaries of another’s path.  I must practice self-restraint, and refrain from judging.  I must trust that anyone suffering will find their own way to the relief they seek.  I am just a small part of the support system in place that one may need during this time.  I may have some strengths, but I must keep them cloaked, giving of my energy in the simplest ways.

I wish I had the ability to laugh at life, to take it less seriously.  Children are blessings to those who have them in their lives, for they are natural lovers of effortless mirth and joy.  I can pull on my memory bank of the time I had living with my own children and many of these memories make me smile.  Their presence in my life for that short time was the best, and even though my blunders were many, we still experienced some good times together.  Today, I have a good feeling whenever I am with either of my grown children.  Even when I am not with them, I know they are living in love and self-acceptance.  They love life and laughter.

I am done with feeling burdened!  The rest of today is available for discovery.  The dog barks outside; maybe someone is coming to visit.  That would be a delightful surprise.  I can offer any unexpected visitor some of the zucchini bread I baked at 6:30 this morning, along with a fresh cup of coffee.  I can ask my visitor to share any thoughts or stories that might elicit some laughter.  If nobody comes, then I will search my chaotic mind for some happy memories, and organize the mess that I call home.   The rest of my day I dedicate to smiling with a glad heart!

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