Laughing at Adversity
Laughing in the face of adversity is what ultimately healed Carlsbad resident Linda LeVier while she was recuperating, physically and emotionally, from a heart transplant 10 years ago. The experience not only prompted her to become more involved in relatable causes in the community, but to also write a book about her positive attitude during her ordeal, titled Laughing Hearts.
Name: Linda S. LeVier
Hobbies: Sharing stories and laughter with friends; giving presentations about organ donation; looking for new ways to stay active
Favorite Places in Carlsbad: My home in beautiful Sea Cliff, our ocean, our cultural venues
Discussing her book-writing path, Linda recalled, “As I shared serious and funny stories about my medical journey, I was often told to record my tales so they could reach a wider audience. While my story is serious, my memories gravitated to the funny and touching times I had with my medical teams from two local hospitals. People began to tell me that I inspired them to look at challenges with an attitude that makes their situation more tolerable, especially if they can see the humor along the way.”
The true motivation for Linda to turn her book idea into a reality was when her cousin, who had read the first draft, made Linda promise to publish her book just two days before he died. Linda is so happy she kept that promise, as her book is a tool for many others to see the light at the end of a scary tunnel. She elaborated, “Medical, emotional, and aging challenges can be met with attitude adjustment and accepting support from friends and organizations.”
Some of the organizations that have helped Linda are now a platform for her to give back to others in similar situations. For example, Linda leads Laughter Yoga sessions at senior living centers, and she volunteers for Donate Life and Lifesharing by doing presentations about organ donations to high school students. Linda is also on the board of directors for the Laughing Matters and the Pulmonary Transplant Foundations.
Recently, Linda had a big celebration to honor the 10-year anniversary of her heart transplant surgery. Discussing her event, Linda exclaimed, “It brought together people who supported me from the beginning of my illness with others I met during my medical journey. It was an informal party with music, food, my medical souvenirs, ping pong, hula hoops, and other toys. The party was all about my gratitude for the gift of life!”