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Laughing Like a Little Child
Ever heard the one about the doctor who gave his patient six months to live because she had terminal cancer? And when the patient couldn't pay her hospital bill, the doctor gave her six more months.
Go ahead and laugh at that joke. People more knowledgeable than me say laughing promotes good health and speeds healing. In his highly enlightening book The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens, Sean Covey writes that laughter:
- loosens up the mental gears and helps us to think more creatively
- helps us cope with the difficulties of life
- reduces stress levels
- relaxes us as it lowers our heart rate and blood pressure
- connects us with others and counteracts feelings of alienation, a major contributor in depression and suicide
- releases endorphins, the brain's natural painkillers
Then there was a time in 2007 I burst out laughing during a choir practice at All Saints' Cathedral in Nairobi after a fellow chorister reminded me of a friend of mine called Gathigi who sometimes would doze as we listened to classical music back in the '90s. I really laughed and I loved it.
And then there was another time in 2015 I enjoyed laughing at a joke cracked by a fellow teacher at Rose of Sharon Academy in Nairobi where I was teaching piano and music theory. Well, I found the teacher using a phone we call "mulika mwizi" (light on the thief) here in Kenya because it has only basic accessories and a torch that can show who a thief is by lighting on him in darkness. When I mentioned to the teacher that his was a "mulika mwizi" phone, he shot back, "No, this is a 'mulika magaidi' (light on the terrorists) phone. It is more powerful!" That joke made me convulse with laughter. And I enjoyed laughing.
As I have said, it has been a while since I last had a good hearty laugh because of some problems we have been having here at home. Today, I have prayed that God may help me laugh again frequently like a child. Why like a child? Because I have heard it said that children are constantly happy. According to one blogger called Zeenat who runs a website called Positive Provocations, little four-year old children:
- believe in magic, in imagination, in fairy tales.
- never get bored. They can entertain themselves anywhere (even in the loo!)
- have no regard for money, gizmos, gadgets and all the material possessions, cause one little notepad and box of crayons can make them travel realms of awesomeness.
- don't hold on to pain, nor do they take longer than 1 minute to get back to their normal fun self even if, by chance, something doesn't go their way.
- are always excited and open to new and fun adventures.
- are constantly positive and happy. They don't need a reason to be happy; they just are.
Such is the kind of childlike laughing that I would like to be having regularly. After all, why shouldn't I laugh? Am I not a child of the Almighty God who caters for my needs as He does for the sparrows? Is my life not under His control even in moments of challenge?
My dear reader, I beseech you to also laugh regularly like a small child. Some may say that we laugh because we are happy but the truth is, we also become happy because we laugh. So try to laugh even during hard times instead of sitting around looking sour and gloomy. You can't have all play and sunshine everyday; therefore laugh when troubles come. Laugh. Laugh. Laugh.
NEW! NEW! NEW! For those of you who missed my social media update two days ago, let me take this opportunity to inform you that I have produced a new song that is available in the videos' section of this blog. Just click on the "videos" link on the menu at the top of this blog to listen to the song.