A few weeks ago, I went to a laughter workshop.  The presenter taught us all sorts of exercises to get us to laugh.  A few days later I was attempting to serve my kids dinner. But they were all crying!  I couldn’t get them to stop crying and I simply didn’t know what to do.  And then I thought of the laughter workshop I had gone to a few nights earlier. So I decided to laugh.  While they were busy crying, I just laughed.  And one by one, they each stopped crying and just stared at me.  (“Uh oh, this time Ema has really lost it” is what I think they were all thinking.)  And then I started doing one of the laughter exercises I had learned.

It’s called The Laughing Tree.

You crouch down on the floor and pretend to be a little sapling.  And you let out a little giggle. And then very slowly, you start straightening your body and spreading out your hands. As you do this, your laughter gets louder.  You keep straightening out until you are standing fully upright with your hands up in the air like branches on a tree. And as you straighten out completely you let out a huge loud laugh.

Well, I started doing this in front of my kids (who were slowly wiping away their tears) and then next thing I know, my 5 year old jumps down from her seat and starts doing it with me. And then my 2 year old joined in.  And pretty soon the mood had completely changed and we were all laughing as we pretended to be laughing trees. Now when my 2 year old wants to do this exercise, she goes around saying “laughing tee, laughing tee.”
So when the kids are crying and you just don’t know what to do, instead of throwing your hands up in despair, throw your hands up and LAUGH!

To learn more about Laughter Workshops by Yehudit Kotler, visit her website at www.yehuditkotler.com

5/9/2011 06:39:15 am

this is really very sweet- I almost started crying as I pictured the scenario. Kids are so easily distractable for us its so hard to change gears and yet it just takes one conscious moment.

5/11/2011 10:09:06 am

Hi Debra,
I'm not sure how I found your site, but I have to say this posting helped me today - the day my husband was leaving for a business trip and I was feeling very very overwhelmed with all the kids and everything else.
So thanks so much!


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