Feature Story: From the psych ward to the comedy club

Karma Moon (Kim Bowen/Photo)

ATLANTA, GEORGIA: Kim Bowen, otherwise known on stage as Karma Moon, grew up typically like most girls do in Georgia. She came from a good home – her dad is a dentist and her mom was his assistant. She survived being the only girl in a household with three brothers.

Bowen went to college and got her degrees in education, and taught school for 21 years. Her life was pretty normal – or so the mother of two and grandmother of two thought.

That is when Kim experienced a ‘breakdown’ of sorts.

“A few years ago,” Kim told The Murphy Gazette, “I basically broke. I don’t drink, don’t do drugs and just could not take anymore pressure. Years of bad or wrong decisions just caught up with me. My nerves were shot. I had never dealt with my brother, Kip’s death. Everything just caught up with me.”

She continued, “If you don’t have a good support system in place, you can go down hill fast.”

Kim entered a psychiatric wing of a hospital, and that is where she was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and post traumatic stress disorder. “I also went to outpatient therapy,” Kim recalled. “I noticed one thing … when I spoke in our group meetings, people looked at me, they listened, and most of the time, they were doubled over laughing at me.”

“I realized I had not had laughter in my life in a long time. My brother used to laugh at me like that. Even though I was telling my darkest thoughts and was talking about things that I felt made me crazy, people were entertained,” she said. “And I was not offended.”

Kim added, “It was then that I realized I needed more laughter … so I took a class at the Laughing Skull Comedy Lounge in Atlanta. It got me out of the house, and I was learning how to write jokes at my own expense. Both my psychiatrist and psychologist thought it was a great idea. They still encourage me to do it.”

Laughter, Kim said, “is really the best medicine.”

“My family thought I was crazy, and I agreed with them. When I was younger, I wanted to do something with the FBI or maybe be a veterinarian, but ended up teaching instead,” she said.

Being a stand-up comic was not in the cards. “I hate being in front of crowds, so I never ever expected to do stand-up. It never crossed my mind, until people were laughing at me during counseling meetings. Then I started thinking back, I have always been able to make people laugh – even when there were a lot of times I didn’t even mean to be funny.”

“The first time I performed everything went well. I have never had one moment of stage fright. I used to hate giving out student awards, because I didn’t like to stand up in front of people, but now, I have no problem talking about any aspect of my life with a room full of strangers,” she commented.

“I just like to hear laughter … it reminds me of Kip.” Kim paused. “Stand-up has enabled me to laugh at myself mostly. A lot of comics have come from bad situations, or deal with mental illness, so I feel like I am among my people.”

“I get my inspiration from my observations of life … from my life experiences both good and bad. I throw myself under the bus a lot! However, if you have screwed me literally or figuratively, you might wind up under the bus with me,” Kim said with a smile.

In choosing her stage name, Kim said, “I don’t think Kim Bowen is an easily remembered name. So I thought, I needed to put some good karma in my life. There was a big harvest moon that night. And I put the two together – Karma Moon. People seem to remember that name, which is good.”

“Not all comedy is blue, so you can find some clean comedy out there. I encourage everyone to enjoy stand-up comedy. I do a little of both. It is really depending on the audience,” she explained., “Not all comedy is blue, so you can find some clean comedy out there. I encourage everyone to enjoy stand-up comedy. I do a little of both. It is really depending on the audience,” she explained.

As per when and where she will appear on stage, Kim said, “I usually post on my Facebook page when I am going to be performing near this area. I will perform at open mic nights in Atlanta …. if it is at a club, I will post it.” (Click here for a link to Karma Moon’s Facebook page or here for Kim’s.)

Kim Bowen is shining like a bright moon adding good karma to her life and to those who hear her by sharing laughter.

Keep ‘em laughing, Karma Moon!


Author: rlhwrites

Curator of prose and such.

One thought on “Feature Story: From the psych ward to the comedy club”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s