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How I Let My Autoimmune Disease Steal My Laughter

The Realization I Did Not Laugh Anymore

My sweetheart and I try to go on a date night once a week – to give us a chance to get our minds off work, kids, responsibility, and to simply reconnect, talk, and laugh together.  Date nights were nonexistent for a period of time when my health and autoimmune disease were at their worst. Then, as I began healing, date nights were still short and consisted of me falling asleep on the way home in exhaustion.

Shanna Nemrow Wellness Unraveled Blog Post

On one of these date nights, my husband and I were stopped at a stoplight, not talking, and I had a realization hit me like lightning. We did not laugh anymore. In fact, racking my brain, I could not remember the last time we had laughed together. Then, to make matters worse, I could not remember the last time I had laughed at all, or even felt like laughing. I could remember my husband laughing with our kids, but apparently my sense of humor was MIA.

Stopped in the car at that stoplight, I wanted nothing more than to laugh with my sweetheart again, about anything at all. Racking my brain, I tried to think of something funny to say.  Desperately, I attempted to think of something funny that had happened with the kids recently.  When all else failed, I simply decided to just find the sensation to laugh. Nothing. Nada.

The Search For Belly Laughs

All I felt was the weight of my autoimmune disease and the accompanying emotional stress weighing me down. My autoimmune disease had struck again – this time stealing my laughter. This was going too far. I knew deep down I had allowed this to happen. That no matter how sick I was, I can still find joy and laugh. I could not even find a fake laugh within myself that night, let alone a deep belly clutching laugh. But what I did find was my determination to launch an all-out search and rescue mission for my sense of humor.

I promised myself that once I found my deep down, belly clutching, embarrassingly loud laugh, I would hold onto it with all my strength, unleash it every chance I got, and never be ashamed of it again. It did not take long to find my laugh again, once I pushed all my resources into finding it.  In the process, I made a new discovery too…laughter heals.

Choosing Joy and Laughter Every Single Day

Ever since finding my belly laugh, I unleash it everyday.  I am not ashamed of it; I am proud.  I hold my head high when I laugh so hard that I snort, because I am living with an autoimmune disease and laughing every single day.  Even when I am experiencing an autoimmune flare, I look for joy and choose to laugh, especially on the hard days.

You can learn a little more about my healing story here.

Feeling weighed down by the daily realities of living with an autoimmune disease, and dreaming of a deep belly laugh?  Here you go.  Enjoy!

“A good laugh heals a lot of hurts.”
-Madeleine L’Engle

“Always laugh when you can. It is cheap medicine.”
-Lord Byron

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