I am one of those weird and crazy people who can get tickled at the strangest things, and can’t stop my uncontrollable laughter until it has run its course. Additionally, when I do laugh, I am prone to collapse due to cataplexy, a condition in which my muscles all go suddenly lax, and my knees may buckle under me.
During the winter months I am often plagued by depression, and it takes a great deal of prayer and proactive determination to keep from losing my joy completely. I sometimes find myself praying, “Lord, I don’t know what I need, but please send me something to help me hang on”.
I always look forward to the hope that accompanies the advent of springtime, and enjoy getting started on my flower gardens. One spring, not long ago, I went out into my front yard to work in the bulbs underneath my Redbud tree. Despite my allergy to mulch,I reveled in the warm sunshine, merrily sniffling, sneezing and digging, when suddenly a bug flew up my nose.
To my horror, he became firmly lodged in that area of the throat from which there is no graceful return. My best hope was to expectorate the offender before he made his way into my lungs. Disregarding social considerations I proceeded to very earnestly snort, hack and blow in full view of God and all the neighbors.
That’s when the laugh-attack struck. I clung to that tree for dear life, holding my aching side, legs crossed, (moms you know what I mean) hacking, sputtering and snorting, turning purple, trying not to inhale, until finally, (gulp) I swallowed that bug just to get it over with!
Be careful what you pray for, and be prepared to be a good sport about it when God in His infinite wisdom (and with a gleam in His eye) says: “I know just what you need”.
Copyright STLloyd 2004
An abridged version of this true story was related to my friend, author Tammi Morgan, via e-mail and used by her (with my permission) in her book, Emerging Butterfly-Finding Life Beyond Anxiety Disorders. (PublishAmerica-2008)