Belly Laughs

I was driving my daughter home from dance the other day, and she casually commented, “I never see you laugh. You smile all of the time but you never laugh.” This took me aback. Of course I laugh, I thought to myself; but the more I reflected on her words, the more I realized she is right. I do not laugh. Not very often anyway. When did that happen?

I sometimes think of this period of my life as a marathon. My head is down, and I am striding along, mile after mile, with my teeth grit: determined to reach a finish line that is nowhere in site. I am taking care of a teenager. I am taking care of aging parents. I do my best at work. I keep our household running. I cook. I clean. I drive. I do laundry. I sometimes find a moment to write and be creative. I repeat.

When I think about my best belly laughs, it is always with the friends I grew up with. The ones who knew me when I was in my teens and twenties. It is the last time in my life that I remember being really really silly. We would find something dumb to riff off of, and laugh about it so hard, it would make us hyperventilate and cry.

I realize that in my quest to be the a ‘good’ mom, daughter, friend and colleague, over the last thirteen years, I have lost connection to the free spirited, immature part of myself, that just wants to play. As much as any other priority in my life, is important to make time to laugh and let go.

In addition to being fun, laughing has many health benefits. It relieves tension, it boosts the production of immune cells and antibodies, and it releases endorphins to improve your mood. All in all, it is just a good thing to do. In the spirit of good belly laughs, I have been on the lookout for videos I can watch when I need a boost. Here are a few that made me laugh until I cried. Please share any videos that you love with me. It would be great to have your recommendations.