A laughing woman in a protective bubble with Zs floating outside of the bubble

Insomnia: You've Tried it All, But Have You Tried Comedy?

If you haven’t tried a little laughter in the face of adversity, I highly recommend you give it a shot. We’ve all heard that laughter is the best medicine. I don’t know that it can be called a cure, but I can say that a hearty laugh does make a tough pill much easier to swallow.

The pill I am currently facing is insomnia. My insomnia is periodic and always falls on nights before big events. When it hits, it hits hard. If I don’t laugh, I’ll cry – so I have started looking for ways to make light of it for as long as I can.

Making the change from music to comedy

Over the last several months, I have found myself turning away from my usual music stations and leaning toward comedy. After this last year, I want a change. No. I need a change. I am looking for reasons to smile and will take them wherever I can find them, especially on the way to work after a long, long night of tossing and turning.

Last week, just as I was pulling into the school parking lot, Orny Adams came on Laugh USA. He’s become one of my favorites, but this bit was one I had yet to hear. As I eased into my parking space, I heard the word “sleep.” Adams was finally speaking my language!

Human connection

Before gathering my things and heading into the building, I gave myself just a few more minutes to listen. I needed that little stretch of time to connect with someone – even if it was just a short comedy bit beamed into my car via satellite radio.

Heck, after the night I had just had, I deserved it. Call it self-care, or call it sheer desperation – I was letting the audience’s laughter wash over me.

Finding my people

As I listened, smiling and noting voices in the crowd that laughed a little longer and a lot louder than the rest, I thought, “They get it. Man, do they get it.”

Adams described in detail the many ways he fights insomnia, tossing out one quip after another. Each one resonated deeply with me, from sleeping meds gone wrong to where in the world to put my arms as I try to get comfortable. The more he talked, the more I was able to laugh about my own situation. I saw myself in every one of Adams’s jabs at sleep. According to the response from the live audience, I was certainly not alone.

Appreciating the humor

You know, it’s not funny when you’re in the throes of it, but it’s incredibly funny to hear someone else lament the same woes with impeccable comedic timing. Adams wrapped up insomnia in one short line: “I don’t know how I can suck at something I do every night.”

Gah, isn’t that the truth? I totally lost it – practically guffawing with tears and all, folks. It’s just such a spot-on comment on insomnia. How many times have I wondered the same thing in not so many words? Adams truly gets it.

A little peace of mind

Once I pulled myself together, I headed into the building. I might have still been bleary-eyed, but I was a little lighter on my feet, emotionally at least.

There are people out there from all walks of life who feel the pain of insomnia. Laughing at our roughest nights won’t bring sleep, but it can make the lack of it a little easier to stomach. There are several comedians out there who openly address insomnia. Trust me, your peace of mind is well worth that Google search.

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