Laughter Yoga – A Great Healer!

Sukumar Satpathy

Elvie Punzalan, Estavillo: Scientific studies have long confirmed the vast potential healing powers of laughter, and my most recent experience once again proved this. Last October as I was going back to my car, I missed a step and slid to my left side before landing on my right foot. On being medically examined it was found that the 5th metatarsal of my right foot was fractured. It was put in a temporary cast that still enabled me to step using the heel. Since I had done Laughter Yoga sessions for two consecutive weeks and released tremendous amount of endorphins during the sessions, I did not take painkillers! After a couple of days, I consulted my doctor who put my right foot in a cement cast. That started the difficult-and-almost-helpless situation I had to endure.

The harsh reality of not being able to use my right foot then set in! But I was determined to get on with my life. As committed earlier, I went for lunch with my friends two days later… and sure they were surprised to see me in a wheelchair! Haahaha. For a month, I literally had to be assisted getting dressed, bathed, going to the bathroom etc. Racquel, my long-time ‘Girl Friday’ assisted me wholeheartedly and caringly in doing things I could not do by myself. For someone who regularly goes out after a hard day’s work — then suddenly confined to the four corners of her room – was truly a patience-and –faith-testing experience! There were times when feelings of helplessness, of not being able to do business, and regular workout would engulf me, but then laughter and prayer helped me go through this utter discomfort.

Every hour I prayed over my right foot — visualizing that I can be on my feet again — to spread joy, scatter sunshine and help people be healthy, happy and positive through Laughter Yoga. Faith and tons of laughter carried me through my ordeal. Besides my optimistic attitude, the loving support of my family and friends and their kind care and assistance also helped me fight my battles. Weeks of immobility were made pleasant and bearable by their gift of simple-yet-pure joys which enhanced my patience and endurance. Indeed, there are many reasons to smile, laugh and be happy about — despite the roadblocks in our travel life road. Although proper medical care definitely helps hasten our bodies’ defense mechanisms, one’s positive attitude and great sense of humor can accelerate healing process.

I resort to Laughter Yoga when “low moments” start to grip me. I do Hearty Laughter as it lifts the mind, body and spirits as often as I could, and laugh for about 30-40 minutes a day, even just by myself! Viola! I feel much better and brighter. Every now and then I chant “I am healed, fully healed. Yehey! ” “I am healthy, super healthy, Yehey!” “I am strong, very strong, Yehey!” Every day is a healing progress, and my right foot is now healed, Yey!