Loving Laughter

The Inspired Life

Blessed is he who has learned to laugh at himself, for he shall never cease to be entertained.
~John Powell

Being a shy girl growing up, I wasn’t known for my sense of humor. For that matter, I wasn’t raised in a family that sat around and told jokes. Stories yes. Jokes…not so much. We were hard working, not so much hard playing. Playing was playing cards and then we played hard to win.

So it always amazed me later on when I would sit around a group of friends who would tease each other, poke around and then burst into a fit of laughter. It was an alien concept. OR maybe I was the alien.

The good news is that I didn’t laugh at other people and their misfortune. The bad news is that I didn’t know how to laugh at mine either. Every mishap was a huge embarrassment and I was sure that everyone else was staring at me through a giant magnifying glass examining my mistake. It was the breeding ground for my future perfectionism complex.

I needed to lighten up. Enter my childhood friend that I shall call *Karen.* Karen was one of those people that took nothing in life seriously including herself. She could laugh off the most embarrassing disaster. I would sit in complete amazement as we would whisk out of a room after a pickle she had gotten us into, me beet red, her in a fit of giggles. I won’t tell you she was the best thing that ever happened to my childhood. She wasn’t. In fact the litany of trouble she got me into could fill a book. But I learned that nothing in life was that serious, or that worth beating myself up over. I learned to have a little fun. To let go. To laugh at myself for getting it wrong. To just laugh period. She was fun to be around. Most of the time.

Over the years, I’ve landed myself in more than my share of puddles. Without anyone to blame but myself. I’ve learned to laugh at myself and more importantly with myself as I have journeyed about, learning the lessons along the way. I am afraid to think about where I might have ended up, had I not learned to just shrug it off, let it go and move on to the next one. It has been a saving grace for me.

I am still not known for my sense of humor. I know I have one, but it’s discriminatory I guess. I don’t think the Simpsons are funny. I leave the room when it comes on. I think the Friar is hilarious. My kids are funny too. I have no idea how they got that way.  My husband is also funny. He has the same sense of humor as the Friar. I guess someone in the family has to be the straight man…um-woman… so that is my place in the family line-up, but I have learned to surround myself with funny people!

Laughing is good for the soul. Summer is here and it time to relax, kick back, take yourself less seriously, take life a little less seriously and find some ways to get some humor and laughter in your life.

I probably won’t ever be the one to tell you a joke. I’m not even sure I know any. But I hang out with a lot of folks who will. Because I know the value of laughter. With myself and with others.

How about you? Done or seen anything funny lately? Have a joke to tell? Feel free to share it here!


7 thoughts on “Loving Laughter

  1. Hey, Friar, you’re a tag! How cool is that!

    I wanna be a tag.


    I was never one to “tell a joke” either. I see things askance, and make a joke out of… almost everything… but I couldn’t tell you a joke if my life depended on it.

    Still, people who know me spend a good deal of time laughing. I turn the blackest stuff into funny stories. The Irish in me, I suspect. I spend a good deal of time appreciating friends’ humor, too, so it works out. Valuing laughter, like you said, is so important.

    I do laugh when I read some things you write. You have a good sense of humor, and you tell a funny yarn on occasion. Not everyone needs to be a trained seal with a quip at the ready.

    Your light touch makes reading Life’s Little Inspirations a pleasure.



  2. I absolutely love to laugh. It’s always a good time when people can make me laugh or situations make me laugh. It’s usually my brother’s goal at a family dinner to make me laugh and once I start, all he has to do is say a simple word, doesn’t matter which word and I bust into hysterics! Of course there is always the potential of me honking like a goose if I laugh too hard, it’s a family trait!

    Great post, I’ve got something similar lined up for later this week that I was going to do, maybe I’ll have to wait now!

  3. I’m very much the same way and I’ve always sought out friends and boyfriends that make me laugh. And we all need that one friend who gets us into loads of trouble! I was always serious and shy too but my easy going and funny friends taught me to lighten up, so for many years now I’ve been pretty easy going. I like it that way a lot better!

  4. I’ve found that I make friends laugh the most when I’m making fun of myself! I think that sometimes it’s the best way to vent without being a downer.

  5. Wendi, what a great story! I wasn’t one to just yuck it up but I do love to laugh. I was shy as a kid too, and an only child. Now, almost anything tickles me. I am that person that will giggle with toddlers for absolutely no reason, or make funny faces and sounds even when alone just because it cracks me up. I like funny people. Friar cracks me up too, Simpsons not so much. I love Kelly’s wry wit too. Laughter actually has health benefits so we can all benefit from lightening up and having a good chuckle.

  6. Hi Wendi!

    Me … I missed laughing. I grew up in a family filled with sense of humor. May it be a green joke, toilet humor to something educated … you name it. lol.
    My friends would call me “the clown” not because I laugh at other people or crack a joke about them but more because I like making jokes about the stupid things I do or weird things I experienced and even when I’m complaining! I guess it’s how I relate the story. Anyway that’s what I missed. Since I moved in Germany, I noticed that I dont’t laughed that much anymore. It’s not that people here are not funny … lol. I don’t know….but it sure is nice to discover laughing again.

  7. Hey, thanks for the link love! I’m glad you think I’m funny.

    I totally suck at telling jokes, though. That’s a whole separate talent, that I just don’t have.

    I just stick to being myself…that usually gets people laughing (whether I like it or not!) 🙂

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