When are we too old to giggle? Or better yet, why do we think we should ever be too old to giggle?
As part of my granddaughter’s birthday celebration, she planned a party with friends… an evening of pizza, games and movies… and of course birthday cake! It was a special evening, and as I sat in another area of our home listening to the festivities, I was enthralled by the giggling coming from this group of girls. What a special sound… it’s the sound of joy, the sound of no worries, the sound of the enjoyment of spending time with friends. Now, the not so obvious… this was the celebration of my granddaughter’s 21st birthday, and this was a group of young women of similar ages!
And I wondered… when did the giggling stop in my life? And why did it stop? Did I, at some point, get so caught up with the cares and burdens of my life, of the world, that the innocent joy that erupts into giggles stopped? Did I, at some point, think that it would be totally inappropriate for an adult to reflect this innocent joy? Whatever the reason, shame on me, and maybe shame on all of us!
We’ve all heard this, but it bears repeating. The simple act of laughing causes your body to release good-for-you endorphins that instantly increase the flow of oxygen to your heart and brain and boost your mood. Laughter also has the ability to instantly combat stress by triggering your body to release dopamine, a feel-good hormone in the brain. On average, an infant laughs nearly two hundred times a day; an adult, only twelve. Hmm… does that make you stop and think? It did for me…
Okay, a brief personal moment… I have a medical condition which, at times, causes me a great deal of pain. For some reason (!), my go-to response is not giggling! It’s more about trying to relax, which rarely works, or medicating. So, I wonder, what if I kept handy some funny videos on my phone to make me giggle? What if I recalled some fun moments in my life, and allowed those memories to elicit a giggle or two? Hmm again…
So, I’ll leave you with a few quotes to perhaps spur your thinking… maybe I should leave you with a joke to make you laugh…? Take care… and try giggling… let me know how it goes!
“Against the assault of laughter, nothing can stand.” — Mark Twain
“As soap is to the body, so laughter is to the soul.” — A Jewish Proverb
“You don’t stop laughing because you grow older. You grow older because you stop laughing.” – Maurice Chevalier
“I have always felt that laughter in the face of reality is probably the finest sound there is and will last until the day when the game is called on account of darkness. In this world, a good time to laugh is any time you can.” — Linda Ellerbee