This I Believe

Sapphire - Marietta, Georgia
Entered on December 13, 2006
Age Group: Under 18

My belief is a simple one. It might not bring about world peace or dramatically change the world in any way but it does bring people closer together. It comes in various forms and intensity but how it affects people is all relatively the same. I believe in the power of laughter.

True laughter can be a powerful ally. Laughter represents the common ground for society and exists in the heart of everyone no matter if they are young, old, rich, or poor. When strangers meet, a bond of friendship is formed usually when they share a laugh. Not a laugh that sounds fake and awkward, but a laugh that brings out honest wrinkles around the eyes and mouth. Happiness, comfort, and equality. In a single laugh, relationships are strengthened and a heart to heart connection is made. Sometimes, that is all we need to help us mend our troubles and move on with our lives.

Every morning when I arrive at school, I walk to my first class, sit down, and focus my mind on my work. But there are times when I just feel like my brain hates me and I can’t wait until lunchtime. One day before the bell finished its last ring, I was already in line buying whatever the lunch ladies had concocted. My friends and I sat down at our own half of the table and began eating. I am usually starving by lunch and so in the middle of munching my sub, a stray piece of onion fell from my sub and into my lap. I knew everyone saw me, but I pretended like nothing happened and casually brushed off the onion piece. But, for some reason I thought it was funny and a smile escaped from my lips. As if it was a cue on stage, all of my friends broke out into uncontrollable laughter. We all knew we were laughing at me, but I did not feel embarrassed at all. The laughter wiped the embarrassment away and I ended up laughing the hardest. But what struck me the most was that we were all laughing, not just one of my friends, but all of us. Even though we don’t like to admit it, it is those little moments that we cherish the most and want to relive. It is these moments that bring all of us closer together and wipe away feelings of fear, sadness, and embarrassment. In the end, it isn’t having more money or gaining fame that matters the most, but the feelings that are felt when a laugh is shared.

I don’t know if laughter can change the world, but I do know it can change lives. Even if it’s just a stray onion piece, laughter can be in everything and in everyone. We just have to find it. Everyday we want more out of our lives, but sometimes, what we want the most resides in the laughter of whom we love.