Bipolar II, blogging, enjoying family, Friendship, Having fun, TBI, thoughtfulness, Uncategorized, Wisdom

The Healing Art of Having Fun

Though this is a random photo of people that I don't know, this could easily have been my friends and I in college! (Photo by Alamy)
Though this is a random photo of people that I don’t know, this could easily have been my friends and I in college! (Photo by Alamy)

A telling statement in our household is the phrase, “I haven’t laughed enough today.”  Just as our bodies need food, air and water to survive, our spirit craves  laughter and fun in order to thrive. When my daughter was in the throes of a bipolar depression, there were many days that we forgot to laugh and many days that we were incapable of expressing the joy of life.  Often, each day was about survival and mustering through medication adjustments, rather than making the most of each moment that we were together.  However, little by little, as my daughter made improvements, and as I began to trust her recovery, the smiles and laughter that usually graced our home returned.

This past Tuesday, was a rough day for my best friend.  She suffered a traumatic brain injury from a car accident a little more than two years ago and her life is vastly different. I still approach her as the same brilliant person that I’ve always known, but her cognitive and emotional skills have rendered her unable to work for now. Having always been a person who prided herself on her amazing intellect and work ethic, this has been quite a blow to her spirit. After dedicating her life to helping others, she’s now the one needing assistance.

I’ve been helping her organize her beautiful home by getting all of the paperwork that’s piled up since her accident in order.  It’s a daunting task, but one that we’ve approached with much effort and laughter. On Tuesday, the mirth and merriment halted after finding out that she needed to reapply for her Social Security Disability Benefits.  After visiting the Social Security office, we headed to her home to begin the online application. I could quickly see my friend’s spirit tiring as she searched through medical and financial documents.  Her frustration mounted as her internet connection slowed and flickered; finally halting our efforts. I was obvious that she was using all of her mental fortitude to not dissolve, defeated, into a puddle of tears. It felt terrible to leave her in such a downtrodden and exhausted state.

Today, after wellness center and weigh in, we’re meeting up to try again.  I’m prepared for some frustration, but I’m also prepared to lighten the mood.  Part of loving a friend is being their caregiver, at times, but it’s also essential to remember to nurture the other components of a relationship.  My friend needs my help, but her spirit sometimes needs me to take her away from her troubles by our laughter and silliness. Having fun matters.  It normalizes us and presses our reset button.  Having fun edifies us and fills us up.  Having fun is healing, and we can’t let the struggles of life cause us to forget that!

What do you do when you need a good laugh?  🙂

18 thoughts on “The Healing Art of Having Fun”

  1. What a wonderful reminder 🙂 we laugh a lot in this house too, it’s integral to our very cores. When my darling friend was dying of cancer, we laughed a lot, we didn’t take anything too seriously, we all knew what was coming, but why waste the time dwelling on it?
    I hope that today is a better day for your friend and that you can complete the application xx

    1. Thank you! Today went very well. We just finished up a little bit ago. I had a talk with her about us having more fun, in addition to the things that need to be done, and she was very much in agreement. I’m very happy that she’s rested and relaxed all day.

      I’m so glad that you were able to keep a light heart with your dear friend. Losing her had to be so hard and you were both very brave to not dwell on what was coming and just enjoy each other.

      Have a great rest of the day, my dear! 🙂

  2. It warms my heart to hear what an amazing friend you are to your dear friend. Keep the laughter going as It’s just good for the soul. At the risk of sounding a bit cliche, it’s hard to find good friends and once we have them we try to hang on for life.

    Hope you had a fabulous weekend! Our Monday morning is off to a great start 🙂

    1. Yep, we’ve been best buds since my first day of college. Happily, the next day we got the paperwork done. and she spent the next day relaxing like I told her to! She’s certainly a keeper!
      I’m so glad your Monday is starting well! 🙂

  3. Running into friends randomly in town that I haven’t seen in ages gets me laughing! Usually about nothing or something completely bizarre. I agree with the comments and your post that for sure laughter is great medicine! Here’s to lots more hearty chuckles.

    1. I agree, too! My family teases me about knowing everyone when we go shopping or to the grocery store. It takes us forever to shop because I stop to talk . I taught school in my town for 16 years , so I do sort of know a lot of people around here. Yes, to more laughs!! 🙂

      1. Great stuff. Makes you feel part of the community when you know the folk around you. I lived places where this would never be the case and life ends up being nothing but fast! Nothing to slow you down! (And not so many laughs!). WP makes me smile too so this is also a great community. Here’s to WP friends!

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