Laughter is Always the Best Medicine

Marisa - Albany, Oregon
Entered on November 13, 2008
Age Group: Under 18

Imagine you’re going through hell. How would you cheer yourself up? What is the best medicine? For me, it’s laughter.

Just last year I had the chance to remember the importance of laughter in hysterical bursts. I was invited by a group of friends to go swimming. The driver lost control of the wheel on our way back home and we crashed. Jon Elliott, one of the passengers, tragically lost his life that day. He was only eighteen.

Never had I been through something so traumatic in my life. As the first few months went by, I felt like I was on the brink of insanity. I became depressed and developed what felt like a constant anger. A lot of the time I would feel as if there was no purpose to life because in the end, we’re all going to die anyways. This wasn’t like me at all. Something inside of me was growing so cold. As with everything that grows too cold, I eventually shattered.

The shattering made me realize that every moment I spent crying about the tragedy was a moment of happiness I’ll never get back. My conscious told me I had no choice but to pick up the jagged pieces on the floor and move on. Holding on to the negativity, although it had become familiar, was getting me nowhere. I needed to laugh again. It was as simple as that.

Growing up I was often the class clown, doing and saying the strangest things. I get even more amusement from people looking at me like I’m a complete fool because I know I’m having more fun. I don’t believe there is much of a point to life if we aren’t just a little crazy.

My friends and I sometimes will laugh about nothing at all. That is my favorite type of laughter. In the end, I feel like humor got me through it all. Not only after the death of Jon, but after anything that stresses me out, my best tension reliever is to make jokes. As long as I live, I’ll always make it a point to laugh like no one is watching.

I believe that when I laugh, even when the rain is pouring and the sky is grey, I can still see the sun shining bright. Forgetful of reality, all that matters are those moments.

Laughter represents the cheapest, easiest, most intoxicating natural high attainable.

Such a simple and common verb is my own personal reminder to myself that I am alive. It is a reminder that life is fun and that I have the right to pursue happiness.