Laughter

During a long drive, I turned off the CD I was listening to, just needing some of the quiet (as quiet as it can be on a highway). Many things crossed my mind, some of it in the negative realm and my doing my best to blow it away with other thoughts. Almost a driving meditation, concentrating on something else, focusing my attention on the task on hand. I drove safely, very aware of the trucks and other cars on the road, so don’t worry. The traffic was light.

Here is what came to mind when I thought about laughter: three stories, all dealing with times when most would not even think it’d be a time for laughter, but…this is where I went.

My mother had an unofficial nickname: Edith “Two Shoes” Nager. When my father died, in the funeral home, we (my mother, my son, my daughter and I) were in the side room when the family and friends were called into the main room. My daughter looked down at my mother’s feet and said “Grandma, you’ve got two different shoes on!” We all looked: yup…same type of shoe, but two different colored shoes. The four of us started laughing out loud. The moment was cathartic and broke a lot of the tension we all were experiencing. A cousin of mine came in to scold us for laughing, but…well, he is not important to all this. I told the assemblage, during the eulogy, why we laughed, and they laughed/chuckled along with us, along with the feelings of loss of my father.

At my mother’s funeral, I again gave the eulogy. When talking off the cuff about parents sometimes being difficult, my son (a young man now) snorted a laugh. My instant retort was with a “shut up”, but with a smile towards him, and again the assemblage laughed along with us for the moment.

Charlie, Sam, Me, and Rich: June 2005

Charlie, Sam, Me, and Rich: June 2005

I guess these thoughts entered my head as I was driving past the hospital where my HS friend Charles died. My memory of Charlie is almost always of him laughing/smiling. At his funeral, I was asked to give the eulogy as well. I asked the congregation there if there was anyone who shared a smile, a laugh, with Charles. Everyone raised their hands, and everyone smiled.

Sometimes, we need to just remember, even at the most dire of times of loss, some of these moments. An online friend just lost her father, and her post was full of memories like that, laughter and smiles of and with her dad.

Here’s to the moments of lighter, brighter days…those behind us, those still to come.

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About StuHN

I am a creative individual with many areas of passion: Professional Storyteller; NYS Certified Drama Specialist/Educator; Professional Development Coordinator & Facilitator; Workshop Leader; sometime Puppeteer; Playwright; Director; Performer; Teaching Artist; and sometimes more.

Posted on December 25, 2012, in Caring, Family, Friends, Grief, Healing, Inspiration, Love, Meditations, Mindfulness, Prayers, Spiritual, Support, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. Laughter is a wonderful thing. In an earlier post, you wrote a line to the effect that “allowing the self to drown in grief does not do justice to their memory”. (Something like that.) I believe that, and that the best way to both heal and remember loved ones is to recall those moments that made you smile.

  2. Those are the pieces that remain with us… they are also our legacies, Stuart…

  3. I love laughter. Many people believe that laughter is the best medicine and that it has healing qualities. I enjoyed reading about your memories, Stuart.

  4. Laughter heals. Good memories stay with us for ever!

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