When Your Super Power is Making People Laugh
Seattle Native Meaghan Gross Chooses Courage Over Comfort and Becomes a Comedian
Four and half years ago, after raising two boys, and living life as a working mom in a quiet, neighborhood in Seattle, Meaghan Gross decided to become a stand-up comic.
Gross’s sons were moving into adulthood and she had recently been through a divorce. “I thought it was time to reinvent myself,” Gross said.
While most Moms managing an empty nest might take up a new hobby like knitting or head back into the traditional working world (and props to them!), Gross decided she wanted to make people laugh.
“I love to laugh and I think everyone loves to laugh. I decided if I have a gift to make people laugh, I should try to share that.”Comedian Meaghan Gross
It was a work colleague from 25 years ago who was involved in improv who put the bug in Gross’s ear that she was funny. When she finally decided to go for it more than two decades later, Gross signed up for a beginning stand-up comedy class at a local community college. That four-week workshop gave Gross accountability and held her feet to the fire to finally commit to giving comedy a try.
The class gave Gross enough confidence to land her first event, a stand-up comedy routine at the former Laughs in Totem Lake. Asked how it went, Gross answered in her own self-deprecating and honest way: “It wasn’t deplorable. It was ok!”
Gross, a life-time Seattle resident raised on Queen Anne and an interior designer by day, finds content for her shows based on her own life.
Gross riffs on being a mom, jokes about how we are all addicted to our apps on our phones, describes life being single, and finds lots of hilarious things to share about her sons, who she describes as half man/half child.
“Like one them will tell me to stop treating him like a baby, but, hell yes, I want an Easter Basket!”Gross on a recent exchange with one of her sons.
Since stepping into her new life as a comedian, Gross has found steady work as an entertainer. She performs at least 2-3 times a week and now has paying gigs. She recently received a coveted spot at the prestigious Mutiny Radio Comedy Festival in March in San Francisco. This was her proudest moment to date as a comic.
As she was heading into the city, she found herself reflecting on the early days as a comic and how far she’s come. “I was driving into San Fran to do comedy and that was just such a cool moment!”
Gross enjoys working with many local comedians in the Seattle comedy scene, but cites famous comedians Gary Gulman and Tig Notaro as her inspirations. She feels she has come a long way as a performer but there is always more work to do. “It’s a journey,” Gross said.
Asked if she had any advice for someone reluctant to break out of a comfort zone and give something new a try, Gross suggested “breaking it down into smaller steps.” You don’t decide to run a marathon and do the whole thing at once, for example. Instead, smaller steps and realistic goals along the way will help prevent you from getting overwhelmed.
No matter what, Gross encourages everyone to reach for their dreams.
“You have to take a leap and take a chance on yourself,” Gross said.
We are so glad Gross listened to her own advice and took a chance on herself! And she’s keeping us all laughing along the way!
To watch Gross perform, you can find her HERE on her YouTube channel. Check out her very first performance and one of her more recent shows!
This profile is the second in a series on mid-life warriors choosing new paths that require busting out of comfort zones. If you have a dream that’s been percolating for years, it’s never too late to go for it! All it takes is stepping up and choosing courage over comfort. So “take a chance on yourself” (in Gross’ words) and you never know what you can achieve!