Laughing to keep from crying

Laughing to keep from crying

If you follow me on Facebook, you know I try to post something funny or whimsical each day. Some folks have been nice enough to thank me for giving them a daily giggle or for helping them start their day with a smile. I am happy to do so, but truth be told, there is another reason I do it. Let me explain.

If you have ever suffered with anxiety, depression or just general malaise, you understand how difficult it can be to get out of bed each day. You certainly know that smiling or laughing are extremely difficult when all you really feel like doing is crying. For me, the chance to make others laugh often covers up my inability to do so, and it certainly helps me feel better to know that I have made others smile.

I know this about myself, but it never really struck me how important making others laugh is to some people until the passing of Robin Williams. Many of the moments I have laughed the hardest have been watching or listening to Robin Williams. I honestly believe he was one of the funniest men to ever live, but he certainly wasn’t living a happy life based on the sad end to which he came. And I have to wonder if he was working the hardest to make others laugh at the times his life was the darkest.

Those suffering from depression or anxiety will find their own coping mechanisms. Some will eat. Others may exercise. And then there are those of us who swallow our pain and sadness by trying to make those around us happy. We receive joy when those around us are smiling. Unfortunately the flip-side of this is when a joke bombs and no one laughs – that makes us feel worse. And there are times when we will joke at inappropriate times because we simply can’t deal with what life is giving us. It’s not that we are being crass, but we simply can’t bear any more pain and anguish so we try to joke our way through it.

Sadly, those who seek to make others laugh often fool those around them into thinking that life is fine. Others believe anyone that funny can’t simply have problems. In actuality, the problems exist but the coping mechanism of humor helps cover them over. Sometimes the funniest people alive are living a miserable existence, much like must have been the case for Robin Williams. Underneath all his antics and wackiness was a man who obviously had a lot of problems.

All of us have our good days and bad ones. And those people you run across who seem to be hilarious and fun-loving, have their bad days as well. Never forget when dealing with people to look past the surface to see how someone is really doing. And after you laugh at someone’s joke, take time to ask them – how are you REALLY doing? Sure, you might get another joke as an answer. Or you might just find that the funny man needs a hug and a listening ear. What a difference that might make in someone’s life and it just might keep the laughter going for a while longer.

One Reply to “Laughing to keep from crying”

  1. I enjoy your daily humor. There are days it is just what I need to keep going. I hope you can keep going for yourself as well as those around you. Thanks for your whit!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *