Last night, my lady and I went to see Kevin Hart’s new film, “Laugh At My Pain.” I don’t think it’s necessary for me to explain how funny it was. I mean, at this point, I’m sure everyone already knows. And if for some reason you dont find him funny…you dont have a soul. Sike. But, seriously. No soul.
Anyway, there was something I found interesting about his act, and his life in general, and really, the life of most comedians. The notion of laughing at one’s pain. If you look at most comedians lives, they usually spring from crazy, turbulent backgrounds. Dick Gregory, Red Foxx, Richard Pryor, Tommy Davidson, Eddie Griffin, and the list goes on and on. And usually, their act draws from their lives, somehow turning their pain into comedy.
Now, there is one part of me that says that you can’t laugh pain away. You can only mask it with humor but it still stings underneath. There have been times in my life where I’ve tried to make light of something by joking about it, the whole time, a cry, sitting in the middle of my throat like a golfball. Smothered pain, is still pain. Not healing.
But the other side of me questions if somehow the healing is actually in the laughter. I know there are all kinds of studies about how laughter affects mental and physical health, etc. and I also know there are places and classes you can go to, just to laugh. Like Yoga class. But it’s laugh class. Awesome. A little weird, but still…I hear it’s healthy.
There’s a piece that Griffin and I did a long time ago, that no one will ever see, because the publishing company wouldn’t touch it with a ten foot pole. It’s a piece about Jesus, where we created all these outtake moments of his life, not to poke fun, but to humanize him. One of my favorite parts is a page where Jesus is tickling a sick child, and by his tickling, she is healed. For some reason, I choose to believe there is truth in that. The same way a child’s laugh can heal a heart, our own laugh can do the same. It’s a miracle we are all capable of.
So am I saying we should laugh at our pain? Not necessarily. But I am saying that if we can process the pain enough to find humor in it (and usually there is always humor there, tucked under the mess) perhaps the healing will be expedited, and the heart will be made stronger.
Like I always say, life is far too serious, to be taken seriously.