The Importance of Having a Sense of Humor

November 25, 2018 marks 12 years since my friend Ian died. Ian and I sat next to each other in band class 7th and the first part of 8th grade. Ian played the trombone, and I pretended to play the trombone. Ian loved music and was probably too talented to play in the junior high band. I hated band and did not want to be there. Because Ian did not need to try very hard and I did not want to try, we often goofed around. Our favorite way to amuse ourselves was to quote Monty Python, and yes, we used British accents while doing so. Aside from quoting some of the greatest comedians of all time, Ian was just plain funny. He could make me laugh just about every day.

Shortly after our 8th-grade year began, Ian became ill and missed a ton of school. I do not remember exactly how long Ian was absent from school, but it was close to two months. Every day in band class, I sat there thinking, Man, this is boring! I hate being here. I can't wait for Ian to come back. Then, one day in November, Ian felt well enough to come to school. Ian and I had nearly identical schedules, so I was able to see him basically every period. It was so good to have him back. After the last class of the day, Ian and I walked out of the classroom at the same time. I do not remember what he said to another student as he was walking out of the classroom, but I remembered laughing at whatever he said. That laughter made me think to myself, It's so good to have him back. Unfortunately, that was the last day of school Ian ever attended. On the Saturday after Thanksgiving, Ian passed away. Following his death, band class became unbearable. The hope of Ian's return was gone. There was nothing to look forward to. Ian was never coming back. I had no one to make me laugh. Mercifully, my mom let me quit band in the middle of December.


What Ian Taught Me

I did not realize it at the time, but Ian made band class tolerable. Without him, I was miserable. Ian gave me the gift of laughter. He brought a ray of sunshine into a dreary part of my day. Ian taught me the importance of having a sense of humor.


The Need for Humor

Life with ADHD is rough. The struggles we ADHDers face can take its toll on our mental health. If we do not have a sense of humor, we would probably go insane. I think the reason so many of us with ADHD have such wacky senses of humor is that we have a desperate need to laugh. They say laughter is the best medicine, and as far as mental health is concerned, laughter comes darn close to being the best medicine.


Today's Reset ADHD Challenge:


Let me help you with this one. Here is the Monty Python sketch we most quoted during band class:

Make someone laugh today, even if it is only yourself.
— Tim Gabrielson