In 2016 I was presented with the opportunity to take a unique course for an organization called Stand Up For Mental Health. This is when I met the amazing David Granirer. David is a stand up comedian and founder of Stand Up For Mental Health.
Going into the course, I was facing a long bout of depression. I took the course in hopes that it would benefit my public speaking skills. What I got from it was something so much more, so powerful. At first, I started out slow, not feeling like I was able to laugh at what I was going through. But, through the teachings and wise words of David, I started to realize that my illness is not a death sentence, that I can laugh about it. The course lasted for 3 months and at the end we did a show at the White Rock Playhouse Theater. I had been so used to doing public speaking, but this was a whole new experience. I will never forget walking on that stage and feeling so supported and encouraged by the audience. It was very empowering and I delivered my set, to cheers and applause.
Fast forward to January 2017. For the last year, I had been asked by many people when I would be doing my next stand up comedy show. I never really thought about it, figuring it was just a one time occurrence. However, as the new year started, I thought of an idea to have a “reunion show” for the White Rock stand up comics. I was fortunate at the same time that someone walked into my life and really believed that I could be successful at stand up comedy. At first, I was skeptical. Did I really want to start doing comedy again? Then I remembered the feeling, how it felt to get on that stage and make people laugh. Through a lot of encouragement, I decided that stand up comedy is something I really want to do. I ended up helping plan the reunion show. There is no greater feeling than having people appreciate and laugh at what you have worked so hard on. I realized that this was a whole new way for me to help others.
Thanks to the inspiration of a friend, I went back and read my jokes, forming a set list for the reunion show. Now, I am happy to announce that I have four stand up comedy sets lined up in the next 3 months. I have found that doing comedy really makes me happy and it’s something I can do for my own enjoyment. That feeling, the rush of being on stage is a feeling I crave. I know it’s not going to be all puppies and rainbows, but it is a new journey for me that is already progressing and I am getting a lot of enjoyment out of it.
We all have a purpose in life. As much as I love being a Peer Support Worker, stand up comedy is something I can do in my spare time and it’s something that I do for myself, something that makes me happy. To make people laugh is a big passion of mine, and I know by sharing my story through comedy, I am helping a vast array of people. I look forward to what the future has in store for me in stand up comedy.