“I Believe” Essay Analysis: The Many Gifts of Laughter

           To gain inspiration for an upcoming project centered on my beliefs, I read a few essays people wrote about their own beliefs on a website called “This I Believe.” The essay that caught my eye was called “The Many Gifts of Laughter” by a woman named Madeline. Out of all of the essays, I felt the most drawn to this one because her beliefs strongly resonated with mine on the views of laughter. As said in the title, this essay is about how much of a blessing laughter is and how it has the ability to do remarkable things to people that nothing else can. By using her own personal experiences, she describes how laughter can heal people, bring back happy memories, and “is the gift of love, commradery, unity, health, happiness, and comfort.”  An example would be when she was a teenager and her grandmother moved in with her due to health complications. Even though she was battling immense pain and partial paralysis, she could still laugh and enjoy humor in the midst of it all, which was what lead her to a tough, but longer and happier last few years. Laughter makes you forget your worries, stress, pain, and problems, even if it’s for a second, and for that, it is truly remarkable. I do honestly believe that “laughter is the best medicine.” It was a very personalized essay from the beginning, as she introduced her belief by explaining characteristics of her laugh, which were sometimes so outrageous that people accused it as fake.  I would have to say that the part that moved me the most in her essay was when she described an exercise that involved the use of visualization to imagine a close friend’s laugh. By doing this, you would evoke past memories you had with that friend and recall the whenever you wanted to. Because I’m such a sentimental person, this exercise really touched me and, indeed, made me reminisce in the joyous times I had with friends in the past.


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