Playing Hooky

Laughter is key to a full life.

This week, I tripped, spilled, stumbled, tumbled, and fumbled. I would assume you have your own stories as well. But have you learned to laugh at such mishaps? I hope you will, as I have, because laughter brings freedom and joy to life.

Playing HookyOver time, I found one thing utterly refreshing—when the kids and I played hooky. While Jon was in school, his two siblings and I occasionally took a break from life. We played games and laughed loudly at whatever came along. It lightened the load, rejuvenated our relationships, and lifted our spirits. Even today, the memories of the times we played hooky together bring about belly laughs.

Perhaps your life has become too serious, too dreary. Listen to this wisdom from a Nebraskan monastery friar. Lighten up . . . and every now and then . . . play hooky.

If I had my life to live over again, I’d try to make more mistakes next time.

I would relax, I would limber up, I would be sillier than I have been this trip.

I know of very few things I would take seriously.

I would take more trips. I would be crazier.

I would climb more mountains, swim more rivers, and watch more sunsets.

I would do more walking and looking.

I would eat more ice cream and less beans.

I would have more actual troubles and fewer imaginary ones.

You see, I’m one of those people who lives life prophylactically and sensibly hour after hour, day after day. Oh, I’ve had my moments, and if I had to do it over again I’d have more of them.

In fact, I’d try to have nothing else, just moments, one after another, instead of living so many years ahead of each day. I’ve been one of those people who never goes anywhere without a thermometer, a hot-water bottle, a gargle, a raincoat, aspirin, and a parachute.

If I had to do it over again I would go places, do things, and travel lighter than I have.

If I had my life to live over I would start barefooted earlier in the spring and stay that way later in fall.

I would play hooky more.

I wouldn’t make such good grades, except by accident.

I would ride on more merry-go-rounds.

I’d pick more daisies.[ref]Anonymous, as quoted in Charles R. Swindoll, Laugh Again (Dallas: Word, 1991), 69–70.[/ref]