This I Believe

Lisa - Seattle, Washington
Entered on January 28, 2007
Age Group: Under 18

I believe in the power of laughter. Everyone has their own laugh; some are deep, some are squeaky, and some sound like obnoxious car horns. You cannot control the urge to laugh. It’s simple, if you hear, see or think of something funny, you laugh. It is contagious. One person laughing can send the whole room into giggles.

Laughter keeps us strong. It creates and sustains happiness. Laughter lightens moments and situations. Laughter can actually make you live longer. My belief in the power of laughter has grown as I have gotten older. I have seen people without laughter in their life. An old man sitting on a park bench who hasn’t laughed in years doesn’t have those laugh lines around his mouth or that special twinkle in his eye.

Laughter is everywhere in my life. It is with my family, my friends, and just with me. Once several years ago, I was sitting at the kitchen table doing homework when my mom walked in. She was having a terrible day and was furious. She went to the cupboard and just started throwing pots and pans on the floor. I sat there in shock until she finally turned around to face me. We sat there staring for a few seconds and then we burst into hysterics – we couldn’t stop laughing! In this case, laughter helped soften my mother’s anger and turned it into a shared laughing moment.

I laugh at countless things. My friends say I think everything is funny. I laugh at all jokes, even if they are not funny; I laugh at movies; I laugh at my friends and they laugh back at me. I laugh at many different types of humor; creative humor, goofy jokes, and clever puns. I love laughing so hard and for such a long time that my stomach starts to ache and tears fill my eyes.

When my aunt died a few years ago, my family and I were devastated and heartbroken. However, we were still able to laugh. We thought about all her silly moments and fun times. We remembered the comical songs she made up about Tillamook brown cow ice cream and their old dog Leah. During the time that she was sick with liver cancer, my aunt would ask for “tumor humor”. This story strengthened my belief in laughter by showing me that although she was sick, laughter and “tumor humor” still cheered her up.

Laughter is very important in my life. I laugh often and at many unique things. I look forward to having laugh lines around my mouth when I am older. Some people thrive on power, others thrive on success; I thrive on laughter. I do believe in the power of laughter. It can improve a mood, bring happiness to anyone, and can lengthen a life.