Laughter is The Best Medicine

I have always had a problem with outburst of laughter at the most inopportune time. I inherited this from my mother. I laugh loud and hard. I’ve never been one to chuckle or politely giggle. Mine are like convulsions with my head swinging back and sometimes the loss of bodily fluid. Sorry, just saying.

I remember being in the 4th grade and my teacher,  Sr Charles moved my desk in the hall and made me sit there through the rest of the class because I couldn’t stop laughing. No one else was but me. God only knows what was so funny. I was also sent to the principle’s office in high school for the same thing. Thankfully my mother understood. And then I remember being at the funeral of our dear family friend and neighbor, Maury. My mom and I started laughing and eventually my brother Sean who was the alter boy did too and then so did the priest, Fr O’Donnell.  The whole service was laughing then and all interrupted. Speaking of funerals, at my dad’s funeral this became an issue too. THE most heartbreaking event of my life, thus far. We were at St Roch’s Church in St Louis and had the bagpipes playing as we walked in. So beautiful. All my family together. It meant so much. Sitting in the front pew and listening to the sermon and all of a sudden it hit me. Yes, a tremble. Oh no! This cannot happen. As I tried to stifle the tremor it began to grow. I looked over at my mom and she had a horrifying look on her face of knowing whats to come. My brother and sister began to smile and shake too. I grabbed a tissue and held it tight and my body began to rock. Everyone more than two rows back thought I was crying and having a really hard time. When I knew this was not going to stop, I had to exit the building fast before a complete outburst occurred. I moved quickly down the side isle and down the stairs to the restroom. I splashed water on my face and tried mightily to hold it together. I entered again and took my seat with my family. But this time I made a point of making no eye contact with any of my siblings or my mother for fear it would just start up again. My dad would of understood.

This has been obviously an ongoing situation that I have tried to get a grip on but with no success. In 1995, I married my 2nd husband Greg. Very small wedding with no one but our immediate families there. When it was time for me to say my vows all I could do was laugh. Could not seem to form a word. As I was trying mightily to control my seizure on the alter I looked back @ my mother who was giggling in her seat too. My dad was used to this and just looked on with, oh here we go again, look on his face. The pastor had to stop and give me a break to get myself under control. Looking over at Greg and his family, they looked mortified. Finally, realizing I was pissing the whole Nichols family off so I somehow got it together.  No one would have believed it had I not gotten it all on video. Greg came to appreciate my disorder and often times provoked it. Whether we would be in an aisle in Wal Mart or anywhere else extremely public, he would push my buttons. And then next thing you know, I am doubled over and holding on for dear life with tears rolling down my face.

If I am at my daughters home and she has friends over and I begin to laugh hard, she will do whatever she can in her power to stop me. She gets so embarrassed. Same thing if we are in a restaurant. There was some very memorable humiliating events that I’d love to share with you that I just cannot bring myself to repeat out loud. If you know me well enough then you most likely witnessed this. I am not proud of this. Below you will see a picture of my little sister Colleen and daughter Kari. As you can clearly see, its in the genes. Sorry girls. They say that laughter is the best medicine. If this is true then I should be one healthy woman. Or maybe it was, laughter is the best policy.




  1. Susie

    Loved reading this one and especially the photo! I have that one of us from Thanksgiving –where we are completely cracking up!
    I almost had to take our mothers out of their cousins’ funeral about 8 years ago. My Mom tooted and they just desolved into laughter. I had to act like they were crying and get between them. Inherited for sure!
    Love to you,


  2. Yes Susie, it can’t be denied on where I got it from, or you.


  3. tammy

    laughing is def contagious.. and it is not a bad thing..except when u cant breathe, your ribs hurt, and your head feels like it going to explode..thanks for those times, i dont get it often enough


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