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Laughter of the Soul
I happen to believe that whenever we are really laughing (you know, that loss-of-control laughter) we are at our true self. Present, feeling, being, enjoying.
I grew up in a home with a ton of laughter. My father was a heart-beam of laughter with his dry, sarcastic humor, and I adored it. Naturally I grew up to marry a man with a ridiculously similar sense of humor who elicits laughter from me with ease.
I’ll never forget the day he brought forth a laugh from my soul. This laugh was different than all the laughs I had ever experienced. This laugh gave me something I can’t quite describe.
One evening our family was at a local Holistic Parenting meeting that we attended every month. I was about 8 months pregnant with my third child.
Josh, my husband, and I were listening closely to the woman speaker, as she lovingly spoke. At one point he elbowed me slightly and when I looked over at him he had his eyebrows raised nearly up his entire forehead.
I made a confused face and shrugged my shoulders to show him I didn’t know what he was trying to “say.” I didn’t want to be a distraction, so I went right on back listening to the lady.
Well, my dear husband did it again. I looked at him with the same perplexed face, but he just persisted on with his eyebrows raised to high heaven.
I raised my eyebrows with a look of “what?, I don’t get it??” I was feeling slightly buggered that he was interrupting her talk (err, being rude), but he kept right on with his expression. Then he put even more emphasis on his eyebrows as he once again glanced over at the woman speaking.
And that’s when I got it. I suddenly realized the woman’s eyebrows were nearly touching her hairline, she held them so high as she spoke.
And that was it for me.
I did a sputter of a laugh like a car struggling to start, which very quickly escalated to loss of control. I couldn’t back up my seat fast enough to escape the room and before I knew it everyone was making eye contact with me. I began heaving in a matter of seconds, tears building up in my eyes, and my silent sobs coupled with my loud guffawing begin to take over the room.
I hurried the hell out of there, down the small hallway and straight to the bathroom.
By the time I swung open the door tears were flooding my face and I was literally sobbing with merriment. I was in the magical inbetween place of complete joy and complete loss of my body. That all too beautiful and familiar place found in laughter, but this was so intense it wasn’t so familiar.
The ladies in the bathroom immediately began asking if I was okay. I couldn’t respond. They continued, “are you laughing or crying?” I just nodded, unable to give them an answer.
I felt like I could pee, vomit, shit myself, and explode all at the same time. I was crowing and roaring from a source I couldn’t identify, feeling this insane amount of ecstasy, and convulsing in this body I then suddenly lost all recognition of.
I felt like I had transcended my surroundings. I felt like one giant orgasm of elation. I felt like I was at my true self.
I went into the stall as my body continued to pulsate, with alternating sounds of sobbing and silent heaving. On and on it continued, feeling like there would be no end.
After a long while things tapered off a bit. I took an enormous breath and aimed to steady myself so I could go back to the talk, but every time I got close to the door it would start again.
But then, as I became more present, I started feeling concerned about what friends and the speaker would think. How would I explain what I was laughing at. It really didn’t have anything to do with that sweet woman’s eyebrows. It was more that my husband was on cue with his humor at the divine moment that an emotional portal of pregnancy was wide open.
Determined to return, I straightened my clothes, took some more deep breaths, swung open the door and readied myself to make it down the hall and back into the meeting.
Immediately a friend of mine made eye contact with me through the meeting room windows. And it started all.over.again. I howled out once again and back to the bathroom I went into radiant hilarity and blubbering bliss.
It felt so good and I can only imagine the delight and exhilaration my unborn daughter must have felt.
I am so damn grateful for the goodness of laugher and it’s ability to so easily acquaint us with what lies beyond our bodies.
Falan Storm is a Mamacita to three and a wife to one. She lives in the beautiful mountains of North Carolina, homeschooling, living life simply, and sharing ways to live a meaningful, feminine life at falanstorm.com.