Today I’m joined by “momedian” Heather Tolley-Bauer. She’s a drop-dead funny, stay-at-home mom, colon cancer survivor, stand-up comedian. Her comedy is for moms, women, and couples and covers everything from parenting to Pintrest, the PTA, and really anything else that keeps us awake at night. She’s also the producer and host of the wildly popular, sold out show called ‘Laugh Lines and Stretch Marks’ and she’s even appeared on season four of the Weather Channel’s top-rated original program called ‘Weather Gone Viral’.
Heather walks us through her “day job” (4:03), details how having a comedic outlook has helped her deal with the “tough stuff” (7:19), she talks about moving to the south as a “hot mess” (12:08), why she enjoys bringing a much needed laugh break to her audience (15:25), how she seeks to find a version of truth in her comedy (17:21), brags about the handsome doctor who convinced her to get the colonoscopy that saved her life (19:43), describes her amazing relationship with her son and why it’s important for him to see that “mommy’s have bad days” (31:22), how her family handles most things in their house with laughter (34:47), and how she hopes they’re teaching their son the right things (38:51).
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I’m a lifelong Southerner married to an Indian man who grew up in South Africa during apartheid.
And I am fiercely proud about. If you don’t like that Well bless your heart. I’m Sheryl Prabhoo and this is southern life Indian wife. Today. I’m joined by mom- median Heather Tolley-Bauer.
Heather Tolley -Bauer is a drop dead funny, stay at home mom colon cancer survivor and standup comedian. The first time I saw her on stage I realized I really had to meet her and probably beg her to be my friend. Her comedy is for moms, women, and couples and lets us escape everything from marriage, middle age, and millennials to parenting, Pinterest, and the PTA and really anything else that keeps us awake at night. Heather brings her mom -com to packed shows all over Atlanta, select cities across the U.S., and to large organizations and companies. She’s also the producer and host of the wildly popular sold out show called ‘Laugh Lines and Stretch Marks’ and she’s even appeared on Season 4 of The Weather Channel’s top rated original program called ‘Weather Gone Viral’. Pretty amazing right? Well Heather’s face many challenges in life not the least of which was getting diagnosed with colon cancer at the age of 45. Now she’s turning the page on what might have been described as a midlife crisis and Heather talks with me about using comedy to deal with the tough stuff in life and how important it is for kids to see their mommies have bad days and how she’s using comedy to inspire other moms and survivors to inject just a little bit of laughter into their daily lives. So let’s give a great big welcome to Heather Tolley -Bauer.
Welcome to the show. Thanks for coming back to Southern Life Indian Wife . I just have to tell you last weekend my husband and I went on a date night to a comedy show. It was kind of a date night. We had our adult son and his fiancee with us and that’s kind of about all we get for date night. These days we don’t get to be alone too much. But we went there to see Brian Moote because I wanted to say hey and completely blown away by the opening comedian. I just can’t say enough about this woman how funny she was and how I was just taken by surprise by everything that she talked about in her set. And I’m so lucky to have her sitting here right next to me. Heather Tolley- Bauer. Thank you. So thank you so much for joining me. Oh my gosh. Thanks for having me. You’re excited. Yes. So the next day I was like I’ve got to get in touch with this lady. I was just like Oh my God. Yeah yeah. And I was like I want to make her my friend. I wanted to be on my podcast. The girl. Yeah. So I’m so excited and I wanted to talk to you because you know we’re both moms and we’ve both been through a lot.
Everybody does. We all go through ups and downs. Sure. And your story is just incredibly interesting unique and inspiring to me. Thank you. You’re welcome. And so I just wanted to share that with the people that are listening because I think there’s a lot of people out there that are moms that question they’re doing the right thing for their kids for themselves. And I think a lot of people can really benefit from hearing what you’ve been going through and how you have handled it and tackled it. So let’s talk about that.
OK let’s talk about that. Yeah. So first of all thank you so much for having me.
And I think the biggest compliment anyone could ever give to another human being is to say that you’ve inspired me like you’re you know you’re inspiring. So I appreciate that very much so much. Thank you so much. So I mean as you know I start off every comedy set that I do setting up for the audience too. And you know what I’m all about. And so as you know because you saw me perform I am a forty nine year old stay at home alcoholic and that’s my day.
And I’m cool at it on it.
And I say that I start of every set that way because moms can relate to it. Right. And because I mean I want people to understand that at 49 years old I’ve lived a few chapters. Right know. Right. And that although I am very fortunate to be able to be a stay at home mom I’m not always fulfilled by being a stay at home mom.
Yeah I can totally relate to that. I was a stay at home mom for 20 years and it was not fun. Yeah. There were times that were good. But well you know.
And the way that I relate that to younger a younger audience which much most comedy shows. You know you’re in front of a younger audience and he is you know I look at them and I say Oh I know. Like some of you are looking at me like I’m your worst nightmare. But some of your life that’s a sweet gig. How do I get that gig. You know how do I get to be a stay at home alcoholic. I’m like Just Mary you know I just work hard. MARY Well Mary what do you get. I did one of those six and just married really well.
But yeah I think that you know being being a mom. And of course my son is 10.
So you have a lot to teach me for sure.
Well you can learn from my mistakes not necessarily from any successes that I’ve had probably but you know I think both because you got a lot of kids like you get a boatload of children. None of them are in jail and none of them got pregnant when they were 15.
So see that’s a win. Yeah. That’s a win. That is such a win. And right now at 10 my son’s almost 11. We’re in that Santa Claus tooth fairy Axe body spray.
Yes, I’m there too with a twelve year old. Yeah.
Axe bodies like he believes in you know three things.
Santa Claus the Tooth Fairy and axe bodies spray ahead.
It’s it’s an interesting dynamic to be a stay at home mom who now leaves the house and tells jokes often time that my family’s expense. But I think it’s super important for us for moms in particular and women to take the time to come out and go to a cup for sure go to a comedy show and have had that experience of listening to other moms comedians. It’s what I call myself. Just kind of illuminate what keeps us up at night. It’s sort of like just make fun of it a little bit because not everything is funny right now. Everything’s funny.
But if you can look at it through a lens with humor I think that saves your sanity that can save your life. If you look at things not like you’re going to slit your wrist over it.
Well I hope so. I mean you know my philosophy is if we can you know laugh at the small stuff that we have the bandwidth for the tough stuff. Right. And we both have had tough stuff. We sure everybody out there in my audience has had tough stuff.
Yeah. Everybody has their story. And you know you’re very honest about your journey your story that has brought you to where you are today. So you want to share what exactly that is with the listeners where you started and what made you go into comedy and tell jokes about what you do.
Yeah so five years ago or so five years ago we moved from Connecticut to Georgia as a culture shock.
It was a culture shock. It wasn’t it wasn’t OK. I expected it to be a particular way. OK. I think I I expected to be a very serious. Typical way. And because I would tell my Connecticut friends I mean because I mean I’m not blonde.
I don’t have you know long hair. And so I would tell Connecticut friends I’m like Oh my God I’m going to be like latte drinking yoga pant wearing you know like saying Bless your heart you bless your heart bless your heart bless your heart.
You know I kind of felt like I don’t know I just had a particular female stereotype in mind and I was like I would tell my friends I’m bored with myself already you know because I always had my own thing going on I could have my own business I was a PR consultant you know and then I came here and I knew I was going to be a stay at home mom. And honestly I was a little ticked off about it. You know and because my son was going to kindergarten my husband’s an executive he got to do his thing. And you know all of a sudden I’m in this brand new big house polishing quartz countertops and stainless steel and like I’m going to second the tailpipe if I don’t change something about that.
You know I just wasn’t.
Yeah it was. You can hire your house for like a day. Oh this is beautiful. Now what do I do.
Right. Right. You can only watch so much TV. And so it was it was it was a little bit of a culture shock and then I realized once I kind of got over myself I realized that where we live in Cobb County Georgia.
Nobody’s from Georgia right. People are from all over. So I was really exposed to a lot of different experiences. You know people who have a lot of different experiences and viewpoints. And I was really surprised. It sounds so stupid. I hear myself say it that I’ve got. Get over yourself there. But a really real women here like really real genuine people not like what you expect not at all any girl debutante that’s here later.
Exactly. And there’s that. They are here. The former beauty queen you know the strawberry festival there.
Yeah. The Vidalia onion we you know and not to knock it.
No that’s not what we have in common.
That’s. But I. So so it was culture shock. But I’ve also found the most supportive women that know how to show up. Wow. For you when you need them to show up in in the time that we have lived here I have needed my my girl tribe to show up for me and I’m not somebody who likes to ask for help. You know I’m not somebody who likes to need. I don’t either. That’s that’s hard you know. But the truth is is that when we moved here I had just lost my mother in law who was my best friend. I know that’s a people are like really you know. But she was she was my very best friend and she she died from cancer. And while she was from the time she was diagnosed to the time she died was just a few months. That’s awful. And in that amount of time we found out that we were leaving Connecticut. My husband been off with a job here and we were building a house here while living in Connecticut. My husband was traveling for his job and also to be with his mother as much as he could be. Our son was in pre-K. I had to get a house ready to be sold. And then in March she passed away. And then in June we moved here and I was a hot mess. That’s a lot. It was a lot. I was a hot mess. And then you know like I said kind of you know as a stay at home mom as well ticked off about it. I didn’t. I felt like I didn’t have you know you don’t want to meet people and be like either Hamas be my friend right.
That’s not selling yourself very well. We all have our baggage dry and all have our baggage.
So about six months after living here for about six months now it’s January and I was getting ready to turn forty five OK. And I was like I what do I want this new life to look like. And I said Well I think what I’ll do is I’m just going to do new experiences in this new place that I live and I’m going to blog about it because blogging was a thing. Oh yeah. Blogs a get out now it’s ever a podcast. And the first thing I did was I took a standup comedy class and my writing was it was a great class. I was a great experience. I’ve never like dreamed of being a standup comedian. I wasn’t sure what I was gonna do with it but my friends showed up for me and came to my very first class. My very first performance graduation class you know graduation performance and they really encouraged me to stick with it. And so I was like Alright I’ll do it. So I took a few more classes started hitting some open mikes around town and then I started to realize I do my what I call Mom calm you know I make fun of parenting interests in the PTA.
You know and there’s a lot to make there’s a lot of material millennials and marriage mommy good and middle age you know and I mean plays middle age. I can only hope who lives to be 98 years old. Like now I’m forty nine years old like.
I mean I fear that is way over the night so far like I’m being generous when I say I’m 40.
But hey I mean 100 hundred years ago you would’ve been on your desk. I did well with long gray hair and no teeth.
I don’t know where I’d be. But I know. So comedy was not my long term plan.
But a year into it when I was diagnosed with cancer I. And then when I got through that I was like oh there’s an opportunity here. There’s an opportunity to have be funny. Oh I call it being funny on purpose. And what I mean is how being funny with a with a message OK. And sometimes that message like what you saw the other night. Sometimes that messages. Is raising awareness for colon cancer which is the cancer I had. Everyone just assumes I had breast cancer.
I mean I guess that makes sense isn’t that more common or is it more common.
Well I mean I think you know people just assume that you’re a woman who had breast cancer plus these are just too spectacular too perfect or too perfect to be you know not to be vague but they’re real they’re real. But you know people think that women don’t get colon cancer but we do we get colon cancer as. As frequently as men do. OK well that’s good to know for everybody to be aware of that. Yes. I say if you have a colon you can get colon cancer. But sometimes I go on stage and the purpose of my comedy is just to bring people a much needed laugh break. Yes especially women and moms and couples. There’s nothing that makes you more present than laughing at a joke. Yeah because if you’re not present you’ve missed the joke. Right. So you have to be paying attention. And so you have to it just forces you to push everything else away and there’s all this data about what laughing does for your mind your body the endorphins the kicks in the long term health effects of just laughing that you’re really really doing something good for yourself just by laughing. So sometimes you know there doesn’t have to be a message. I just have to make you laugh. And that’s the gift right absolutely that’s the gift.
Yeah. And you talk about all of these crazy mom things that we all go through we can all relate to it. And it’s great to get in front of someone who can laugh about it and it just it helps you release all of this tension because as a mom of five I know I’ve been through all of what you talk about with the kids and husband and then some I read that time five times five. It’s like it’s like a pressure cooker so it’s a great relief to be able to just laugh about it know that you’re not alone.
Yeah I mean some of my favorite jokes. Here’s the thing about comedy is that people who are watching comedy assume that what you’re saying is the truth.
Right. It’s like when you write a novel. Right yeah. They’re like Oh yeah that’s true right now.
But it could be true. Yeah. You don’t know that it’s. And there’s there is a version of truth in it. So. So it’s an interesting thing to stand onstage and talk about how I’ve been married for almost 19 years now 19 years. Very soon. All right. And how you know we want to have you know sex with each other and we’re so very hot for each other we’re so very love with each other and we just you know and we want to have sex we just don’t.
Right. That is true. It is true. Well it’s true with everybody with me. It’s absolutely true. But.
But you know some of the other things you know around that you know not not necessarily true. And I forget that because you know a lot of times my husband’s in the audience right. And so like he knows it’s true and I know it’s true. And then I realized like people around him are looking at him. Go on. Oh my God she’s hot. She’s talking about it. And that’s kind of like and you don’t break the fourth wall. Right. Like you don’t you know say that’s not true. Sometimes I say that because then I tag it with another joke. But right. But yeah I think I mean kind of this whole time even when I kind of stuck to my mom com lane before the cancer I started having women come up to me and say well I really needed that like oh me too. I needed that. I needed that laugh. And then I realized after my wacky diagnosis and how I was diagnosed it was really bizarre. And basically it really just boiled down to I put myself first and I didn’t have symptoms of colon cancer. There was nothing wrong with me. I had a doctor who looked at my family history who was a dermatologist of all people who said you know what I really recommend you get your colon ask of me. And at 45 years old and no symptoms I was like right. Let me get right on that. Yeah. That’s not to find you’re not going to just jump into now because I mean although there’s nothing. You know the colon cancer got bad. It is it does it. It is a lengthy process. It does it is some prep involved. And as a busy mom it’s really easy to just say no to that. And it’s really easy to just say now.
But he was really handsome this doctor love those my kids had an orthodontist that was so handsome I was loving every appointee.
So I still my dear he saved my life. This guy. So he’s still my dermatologist. And he looks like a walking Ken doll. He is so handsome and he called me and he was like Really. Yeah. Have you scheduled that yet. And I said no and he’s like I really want you to. And I was like All right because you’re adorable. I’m going to.
And now I know really what happened was I said you know my dad died from colon cancer. And I said you know what if there is a chance that. There could be something wrong. They owe it to my son right.
Who at the time was six or seven years old.
I it to him too because I got to do at you know. I mean I had him at 38 years old. I have to do whatever it is I have to do to see this kid grow up you know. And so so lucky. I agree. I agree to do it. I found the doctor who didn’t dismiss me which is a very big thing.
That is a very big thing. Just because sometimes they look at you and say Oh you’re a woman. Oh honey.
Yeah I hate that. And my insurance company paid for it. You’re very lucky. I’m so lucky. I’m so lucky because you know they found the one polyp that they found was with cancer. Wow.
And just because of your dermatologists saying hey you need to because I had a dreamy dermatologist. Fantastic.
I mean we all have dermatologists in Cobb County, Georgia that’s the way it is. But yeah yeah. And and so after they found my cancer and you know when they find that they you just know they have cancer you don’t know what the stages they have to remove everything to find out what the stages. And I had to have two thirds of my goal and take it out. Wow.
Which I know you know as you know I talk about that on stage and like that sounds dramatic but you have way more coal and than you actually need to do. Yeah. Right. Like that’s a good thing. I didn’t know. Yeah I didn’t know.
And so I have one third of my colon and I am completely I live a normal life. My quality of life is is amazing. It’s fine. And I think that’s another that’s another reason why talk about that on stage in joke form because there are people at my. My mother is one of those people who two years ago was diagnosed with stage three breast cancer never had a mammogram and she’s a nurse but she never had a mammogram because she didn’t want to know. Right. And so I make that my responsibility to tell you that this is what I went through and trust me. It was it it wasn’t bad right.
Was it easy. Yeah. But it’s something that you need to do. But it was a bad. Yeah. You do owe it to your kid.
I do because you know after what you went to a cancer patient you know you have an oncologist and you see your oncologist you know fairly frequently and you know I’ve had my oncologist and several other doctors tell me that you know I’m lucky to be alive because by the time I would’ve had symptoms it probably would have been too late. Mm hmm. And by the time if I would have waited until I was 50 to have that baseline call endoscopy that was five years and my oncologist said Heather you had five years to live that three and a half years ago.
Wow. Crazy right. That is crazy and you’re so very lucky that you had good insurance. Yeah absolutely. I had a great doctor that was you know pushing you. My brother passed away when he was forty five from an aneurysm and he was you know the picture of health never went to the doctors and feel like he needed to. Yeah. But he had high blood pressure that no one knew about. So of course that gives me a high risk because it’s a it’s a genetic trait that can you know be in families so I had to go and have this CTA a scan of all of my arteries. My insurance didn’t pay for it. Well it was I think twelve hundred dollars. Wow. And luckily I’m able to do that but someone that doesn’t have less resources the insurance companies really make it so hard to get yourself to give yourself permission to get yourself to the doctor to have good health care.
Well I mean this I have to be a little careful about what I talk about when it comes to insurance because that’s the industry that my husband. Oh OK.
But I can tell you that there’s a there’s enough responsibility to go around. Is there. Yeah. There is.
And I think that’s important for people to know too because there is sort of this there is this opinion that we are all the victims.
Yeah right right. Right.
And you know the big bad you know you know insurers. But listen it’s a big affordable health care is a big problem. Yes for sure for sure. Because now I know that I carry a gene that is under it’s an under diagnosed gene.
It used to be considered rare it’s not really considered rarity more called Lynch syndrome or like one in two hundred and seventeen. Don’t quote me on that but something around that one in two hundred seventeen people have this gene and they don’t know it. Wow. And it really starts with the cancer that you were at the highest risk for is colon cancer and you know check that off my done. Lucky you. Skin cancer is another one.
Had that had a complete and total hysterectomy so that I wouldn’t get that answer. Three months after I had my colon taken out and now I I do the other cancers that I’m at a higher risk for are kidney pancreatic brain cancer and kind of anything that they’ve just added breast cancer to that. And then in last year I had bile duct cancer. And you know that was a thing I didn’t either. But so it’s like oh I was been so focused on my pancreas that my kidneys. Because those are fun cancers to have.
Not only that but I can’t think of any jokes but jokes are hilarious kiddie jokes I don’t have any kidney cancer I don’t have any jokes about that because that’s on a very funny organ. But yeah.
So last August I had filed that just a little bit of bile duct cancer and had six had to have six procedures to get. Wow to be done with that. And it wasn’t a big deal it was all done. You know endoscopic Lee but it’s six times I have to be put under yeah and six times I have to you know thinking about prepared for. Yeah. Between August didn’t end January of this year. So I definitely know that my how long I live is directly related to how good my health care is. Yes. Yeah for sure. And that is that’s a sobering point. Yeah. Just knowing that is tumbling. It’s sobering. And it’s something that you know I hope to get more involved in than you know helping people get have access to.
Sure. And do you feel like it’s something that also has made you re-evaluate life and live in the moment.
Well I’ve lived a little bit too much in the moment. Yeah I read I definitely I just I don’t know which came first the diagnosis or my midlife crisis. You know I read I think it all happened at the same time. So I don’t know which one was which.
But yeah it definitely made me take on this this this mantra of life’s short eat the cupcake. And then you know three years later I’m still eating the cupcake. I’m like I got to quit eat the cupcake.
You know it’s kind of like I was when I was pregnant. Oh I’m eating for two. Yeah keep doing that for five years.
Exactly. Because at the heart have a deep breath you know that. Yeah I mean and also I kind of.
Had this mantra of I’m not doing anything that sucks because going to all these screenings and tests and blah blah MRI C.T. scan that added the part time job for me and so on like some day is my day to day sex so I’m not going to go. Should I run that back. Yeah. You know can’t I probably am I gonna. Absolutely not. Because why I’m not doing anything that’s not right. And there’s cupcakes for there cupcakes right there. And I so I sort of had to figure out the balance right. I had to figure out the What Works for me. And finally I was like You know what.
I had an aha moment and I said wow you know I I can live another 20 years with this I could live two years with that.
I don’t know. You know no one none of us now. Right. Right. But but I have something on paper that says I really don’t now. And that’s a weird that’s a really weird place to be. And I was like You know what if I live the next 20 years as though life’s short I’m probably going to die from cancer and then I don’t I’m to be really mad.
Like I’m going to be like Really. Oh that’s 20 years was OK. It’s 20 after the cupcake that I should not be having. Right. So so it’s kind of. This year with sort of my year to be like OK.
So far so good. Yeah. Let’s keep our head screwed on straight. Let’s you know let’s let’s think about this a little differently right. So now you know I’m I’m doing you know I’m making more disciplined choices. OK. Let’s just call it Tell it that.
I’m still having fun. Yeah you absolutely can.
You can run the marathon or the 5 K Or around the block but you don’t have to do it every day. You don’t even have to do it every year.
I don’t know you have to do it so hard that I don’t want to do it tomorrow. Right. You know to do anything like that now and I could not I cannot do the marathon not know I never could.
Now I know someone who does the Iron Man.
Yeah. Now. Oh God. Now to that falls under I don’t need to do anything that sucks.
I don’t care what your mindset is
So that’s going to suck. I don’t care how disciplined and trained you are. That is going to suck. Yeah.
Yeah I get that I don’t get that but I think that it’s really great that you’re setting this example for your son. Now I know a lot of the things that I went through I feel like you know I showed my ass to my kids sometimes I would be going through terrible things you know we had teenagers I had a hard time in my marriage and I had five kids and you know all of these things going on at once and I was not always the best to them. They saw me cry. They saw my good times and they saw how I either handled it poorly or how I did handle it and I was honest about the good and the bad. And I’m hoping that they are going to be better people for it. So do you feel like in a weird way this is good for your son to see. I do. How you cope.
I absolutely do. I think that it’s important. Again my son’s 10 and I was just telling you before we get started I remember a moment when my son was much younger and I don’t know he was being he and I are very similar like he looks just like my husband.
But when he opens up his mouth he’s all me and because I’m home with them it’s like we are like this like we are so close like oddly connected like we know what the other person is thinking. But we also butt heads all the time.
Yeah that sounds like me and my son. So you get up and I say he’s my difficult child. He’s my only child.
So he’s like my father he’s my sweet one. He’s smart. What is my difficult you know but at the end of the day it’s because we’re very much alike.
And you know one day I don’t know he was just really giving me a hard time about something and I just finally I looked at him and I said you know read Mommy’s get their feelings hurt too. And even in his little I don’t know first second grade brain it was like a moment. He was like it was like an illuminating moment for him. He was like Really. You know I never thought about that because they don’t see us as people. Right.
And I think that yeah they need to see us they need to see that things are hard and they need to see that people are can be resilient. They need to see that mommies have bad days and that but that we work through it and that we come out on the other side of it because I have definitely known people that don’t show their flaws to their children or show or share their challenges.
Everything is has to be appropriate. Right and right. And that’s for you. That’s for you to decide. But as far as so far as my diagnosis goes I. So this gene that I have my son could have it. He has a 50 50 chance of having it and we’re very honest about that and we’re very honest about. I have to have another procedure and you know what’s gonna happen and what are they looking for and how am I you know and what’s the diagnosis and what’s the prognosis. But you know he also sees us in our my husband and I and our marriage have a fight bigger. No.
He read has heard me say a swear word a time or two.
You know he has seen me lose my mind over something and. And I think that I. I do believe that down the road he’s gonna be like oh yeah my momma.
Listen they’re all gonna end up in therapy and I think they’re all gonna end up in therapy.
You’re just it’s just pick your poison and what I know. I think my my kid’s story is gonna be Oh my parents left all the time and they told me I could be anything and they provided me with all my basic needs and most of what I wanted but in a realistic kind of way.
You know I am the therapist is going to be like Okay move on. It really doesn’t make you feel.
And of course in my house we handle most things with laughter.
That’s what saves people’s lives don’t you.
That is how we really and we know not everything else.
Well we get that. But our go to is to just take you know take a take a step back. Oh my God what did he say to me the other day and it was so funny.
Oh. He said. I.
So I have depression anxiety. I mean what do you know what. Don’t you know I’ve been treated for that for four years. You ask what comic slash mom slash human being you know exactly. And so some days you know some days my medication’s working better than others you know and some days I’m on top of my game and some days I’m not. And then you throw in my hormones or have left the building and then you throw in you know this diagnosis that I have and I never know like what’s driving it. That doesn’t matter. I have ups and I have downs and some days I’m really moody and one day I picked up my son and I was and I was really moody and he is obsessed with these strange but true books ok like crazy fun facts about you know whatever. You know it would take you know I don’t know how many golf balls to fill up the state of Rhode Island and then you know I kind of Soviet ad if you put fifty thousand on an ad together you get a whatever whatever and he because we’re weird oddly connected. He knew I was having one of my days. Right. And he goes Wow I guess it’s true what I read in my weird but true book that statistically speaking most people are cranky on a Thursday. And it was a Thursday and I like them and I go wow read bold move pointing that out to somebody who’s cranky on a Thursday.
And real bold move and he says Yeah I know that really could’ve gone either way. And he’s 10 years old. Oh my gosh.
A bold move bold you know. I’m surprised that he says I’m surprised I’m still stay a day you know that’s awesome. We just you know and then we laugh you know we laughed about it and I’m still cranky but.
But instead of like flipping out over a year ago or whenever we just Yeah we he knows how to kind of yeah.
He gets me. Yeah. He knows he knows how to kind of turn it around. Yeah that’s great.
He gets me for sure.
But I think that’s one of the beauties of having just that one child easier good child your bad child. All I ever know because I have I have an only child. Yes I have five kids and my older four saw the absolute crazy in me and I wasn’t able to be able to do that because I’d have you know two going into the swimming pool at the same time an opposite direction right. I’m a teenager and a middle schooler. And it was just crazy. So no way to really relate to that.
Well I have the luxury of a lot of downtime. Yeah.
Meaning that he gets our undivided attention.
Either it is the two of us or it is he and his father or it is the three of us. But yeah he’s like that with our young. Yeah. Gets a lot of I mean I always say for anybody who wants to say that only children ended it at.
We have nothing better to do but to be all up in his business.
So we are very hard on him and that’s OK for sure. If we hold him to a very high standard for sure. But we also have a lot of fun.
Yes you have. It’s a great opportunity to have just that one kid.
It is it is and I hope that what we’re teaching him as well as I mean my husband and I are madly in love but they are we are we are almost 19 years that we’ve been together almost 23 years. And we have been together all of my husband’s adult life. Wow. And did you rob the cradle. I did. I did I am the original cougar. I am. He’s five years younger than I am. I know. I know. What was I thinking. And on paper we should not work right. But we totally worked with my husband and I until they were we totally work. And I’m I hope that our son is also seeing a marriage where we’re partners. Where I don’t think he’ll I don’t think he would describe me as a stay at home mom. Not that there’s anything wrong with that but I think he would just say no my mom was always doing something know I think he thinks of me as a as a as a comic. I think he thinks that my job is being a standup comic. But also he sees this deal with each other with respect with a lot of love a lot of laughs because laughter is a life skill. It’s so important it diffuses situations it build self esteem. And sometimes I go and talk to third graders about what’s funny and what’s not funny. I like let funny is making somebody feel good about themselves when they leave your presence. Yeah it’s not you don’t get to just say anything you want and then say I’m just joking right.
Yeah. Making fun of them and going Oh yeah I’m just kidding.
You know that’s not funny.
No that’s not humor.
That’s a really good differentiation for you to make for them because if they don’t have that example at home I know that right. And you know innately.
Right. I know that. Yeah. And so. So I hope that my son is is learning how to be kind compassionate how to relate to people and how to use humor as a life skill because God knows it has gotten me through you know this stuff that I go that my diagnosis and my continued diagnosis.
Yeah. And I’m so lucky I have a platform in which to share all that. Yes. That is resonating with others right.
That that is the amazing thing. So you’re doing this for yourself for your son for your husband and you’re giving so much to the people that see you on stage or hear you on a podcast or probably even run into you at the grocery store.
Yeah. Pretty much what you see on stage is who I am in my life.
And that’s just amazing that’s so genuine. And people really get a lot from that thing. So what’s coming up next for you. Do you have more shows going on. Do you have any ventures coming up.
Well I do so every month.
I just had one last night
I do a show called laugh lines and stretch marks. That is my baby. That is my brand. That is my everything.
That’s my life every day.
It is at Mad Life. Here in Georgia. That’s my home theater is that my life stages studios and Woodstock and it is mostly an all female lineup of comics women from diverse backgrounds with diverse stories to tell and so it’s comedy for moms women and couples. It is been I’ve been doing that for a little over a year now and it has been a wildly popular show.
I tried to get there last night but because I’m a mom my dog chewed up my kid’s shoe that’s not OK.
No. So what am I going to do. I got to go buy my kid some shoes and I didn’t get to go.
Well luckily for you we do this every Monday and it is such a great show. And so I am I mean I perform all over the place and I have another show that I run every week in Roswell at the Gaslight. If anybody is in Roswell Georgia area they do that every Wednesday but then I get booked to do other people’s shows. But really my baby is left like to stretch marks and I am really just working on putting that together as a package to take it on tour. How awesome that I can bring my mom calm to other suburbs.
Oh I would love that. Well if you do get to that point I will definitely put it all out there to all of my followers and all of my people because I that’s so exciting.
Yeah I’m very excited about it. Super excited about it.
Yeah. They are awesome. Well I really really appreciate you coming here and talking to me and I know when I first saw you I wanted you to be on the show and I really wanted you to be my friend so I hope this will be friends.
Of course. Thank you so much for having me. What a fun time. Thank you.
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