Have you ever heard the phrase, “If I didn’t laugh, I’d cry” ? Sometimes people even switch from laughing to crying. Both offer the body release from tension.
Proverbs 17:22 NASB- A joyful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit dries up the bones.
I like to watch my mother laugh. When she laughs, I laugh, too. Her pleasure makes me happy. Like a disease, laughter is contagious. Unlike a disease it is good for you. Whoever said “Laughter is the best medicine” was wise.
We know laughter reduces blood pressure and stress and therefore is good for the body. It has been shown to help relieve pain and reduce blood sugar. Even without health benefits laughter is good because it’s fun.
I like to make my mother laugh. When she laughs her face lights up and she smiles for a while afterwards. Sometimes she doesn’t understand my humor but usually she does. At times I’m surprises she still understands the subtle jokes. Though Mom has dementia we can still have fun and laugh.
Even though I hate Mom’s dementia I can relieve my tension some by finding humor in it. Here is an example.
Top ten reasons Alzheimer’s Disease is not all bad.
10. You’re not expected to remember people’s names.
9. You don’t remember the embarrassing moments in your life.
8. People make excuses for you when you say something stupid.
7. Every day is like an Easter egg hunt.
6. No reruns- every television show is new.
5. Everyone believes you when you say, “I don’t remember”. Use it.
4. Those hallucinations give you someone with whom to chat.
3. You don’t need a dressing room to try on clothes-modesty is a thing of the past.
2. You don’t mind eating left-overs. It’s always something new.
1. It’s always the first time you heard the joke.
Even with these benefits I don’t recommend the disease. However, if you get it, take advantage of it, and laugh as often as possible.
My mother still has her sense of humor and I hope it stays with her to the end. My mother-in-law never lost her laughter during her Alzheimer Disease battle. She didn’t recognize us at the end, but she would still laugh and smile.
Once I was asked to drive two men from a foreign country to a different location in our city. I pointed out a billboard and indicated it was funny. Though they spoke perfect English they didn’t see the humor. Psychologists have studied laughter and really can’t figure it out. They don’t know why different people laugh at different things and why other cultures have different “funny bones”.
Wherever the laugher resides in the human brain it seems to be one of the latter areas affected by Alzheimer Disease. Many diseases rob of us our joy as we languish in pain until the end. As bad as Alzheimer’s Disease is, it is generally absent of pain and sorrow. That’s looking at the silver lining of a dark cloud.
© Copyright 2018 Ronald Milburn