The other day I received the following text message from a friend. It not only made me laugh, it pointed out some valuable life lessons:
Four very important things I learned today:
- If you are going to do yard work, stop when you are in pain. Should you push through the pain to get as much done as possible your muscles will be in unbelievable pain by bedtime. You’re out of shape; deal with it and go slow.
- Should you not abide by lesson one, you will be woken up from your slumber by pain that brings tears to your eyes. No matter how tempting, do NOT use the expired Icy Hot.
- Should you very foolishly not abide by lesson two, you will find that your arms are now covered in mild chemical burns. This will hurt more than the original pain, but will be amazingly compounded by it.
- At this point you may panic and attempt to wash off in the shower. Be prepared for this to take at least 45 minutes as you gradually increase the water temperature and take care not to get the Icy Hot run off on any sensitive areas. I cannot stress that last part enough. *sigh* This is real life. Hope you can laugh at my pain. I’m sure by tomorrow I’ll be laughing too.
What adds to this story is what isn’t said. The person who sent this is actually allergic to water… yes, this can be a real problem. When her skin is sprayed with water, it breaks out into a rash, which makes showering and bathing more of a challenge. Don’t worry, she’s extremely hygienic despite this condition. But the main reason I mention this is that means the 45 minutes she was in the shower to wash off the Icy Hot, she not only had the mild chemical burns, she was breaking out into rash. The fact that this makes me react with a hint of giggle makes me a horrible person, but in my defense, if it was me I’d be laughing in retrospect as well, so at least I treat everyone the same.
What amazed me about this text is my friend’s ability to make her painful experience come across in a fun way, especially in such a close proximity to it happening. The great thing is laughing at ourselves and the things we do is one of the most healing tools we can use. If you want to get over something, there’s nothing better than being able to make fun of it. Christopher Titus is an amazing comedian who does this like no other. In each of his comedy CDs… yes, I still buy cds… he talks about the struggles he’s had in his life from having an alcoholic dad to a bipolar mother who shot and killed her last husband. Many comedians talk about their stand up being their therapy, and it’s true. If you can find the humor in your pain, you’re on your way to feeling better and reducing the sting. This past week in my business group, for my 45 second commercial I started by saying that I have more years of schooling, more degrees and college papers, and pay for more membership dues than anyone else in the room of 30 professionals, and yet… and yet, I make a fraction of what they make. In fact, many make 5 times as much as me. That’s what I call a poor life choice. I could be angry and/or cry about my situation or I can find a way to laugh about it. There is a place for anger and sadness, but dwelling on that for too long is debilitating. Laughing at our past, however, is a great way to bring acceptance, and eventually for the wisest people, they will use their past to grow into wiser and more loving people.
This week may you find the laughter.
Rev Chad David, www.ChadDavid.ca, Learning to love dumb people