Thursday, July 10, 2014

When life gets hard -Day under missiles

    Covered in dead sea mud from head to toe, two friends and I walked into a cold outdoor shower. We soon realized that the shower had not been water, but in fact sulfuric acid, and that all three of us quickly became blind as bats. Hands out in front of us, tripping over every single rock, we slowly made it to our backpacks. (Supposedly this acid and mud combo is considered a rejuvenating treatment around the world). 
        While indeed this experience was somewhat shocking and uncalled for, it was one that I will never forget. I can honestly say that I have not laughed as hard during this year, as I did during that dreadful shower. 

     Later that day, following a deep and engaging conversation with a friend, I fully realized the capabilities of humor. It turns out that laughter not only instantly makes a person's day better and causes them to forget all of their troubles, but also causes them to completely change mindsets.

      On an average day, I would not consider myself an optimistic person. In fact, I like to think of myself as a realist, which often comes out as extreme pessimism. However I learned how the power of humor can, and more often than not will,  turn even the most pessimistic people, into happy rays of sunshine.  

     With the power of humor on my side, I began to put it to good use. Whenever appropriate, I would crack jokes about the Gaza missiles, and how we are miraculously still alive. For instance, as we were joyfully getting off the bus today, one of the ISI participants told the group that a siren had gone off in Jerusalem minutes after we had left. I swiftly responded with "WOOO, god does love us after all". Granted these jokes are rather cynical, but I instantly saw not only my attitude, but also those around me, turn positive.

     I firmly believe that humor, and general optimism, are some of the greatest survival skills of mankind. Optimism can keep a man sane, through all the ups and downs of our crazy lives. In harsh times, it allows us to believe in hope for a better and brighter future.

      This directly leads to my favorite quote of all time, one that has already been mentioned in this blog: "This too shall pass". The good in this world must not be taken for granted, yet the bad, no matter how bad, will always go away with hope and with endless optimism.

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