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Baby Steps....

I'm going to preface this by saying that this will probably be my most personal post on this site in a long time. Take that for what it's worth.

Why the need to get personal? In the end, this is a deeply personal blog. It was started nearly three years ago by me and five of my best friends (Henry, Smiles, Gringo, Jeri, and Eric (who never got his own subdomain off the ground). I barely knew what a blog was but I knew it was something I could do well and it was a great way to interact with my friends. Then we grew. And grew some more. And it's awesome. Three years later and here I am sitting in an internet cafe in Chiang Mai, Thailand and I still feel just as close to my friends thanks to this blog, this community.

So that being said, I want to keep that spirit alive by being open and honest with you guys. I've been holding stuff from pretty much everyone for awhile. Most of you know I struggle with depression. I learned this past year that going to a foreign country doesn't take away your problems. It almost always magnifies them. But I was too proud and too scared to seek some help. This kind of made things worse. I went through some really dark times in Harbin. But thankfully we have a God who really does love us and is bigger than all that. He has shown me a lot of stuff these past couple weeks and has given me the strength to finally admit I can't do this on my own. Thankfully the organization I work for provided a counselor for me to talk to and he suggested something I've been hearing for awhile. I'm going back on medication. But that is just the beginning. I'm going to be make some serious lifestyle changes with the help of my teammates and hopefully with the help of you guys. God has called me here to China and I'm not going to let this interfere with that calling. I plan on staying here in China for the long term. I'm pretty sure this will be my life's work. I am at peace with that now. But I'm not going to be able to do that without making some changes. I am dedicated to becoming more active. Depression is enhanced by inactivity. I am the poster child for inactivity. This site, which I love, has been probably one of the top five priorities in my life. It can't be anymore. That doesn't mean we're going anywhere. Hopefully we can get some stable hosting so Danny and I won't have to be fixing things every couple days. I probably won't be able to post everyday. I will be doing the podcast every three days though. I'm also going to try and spend time every day excercising. This is a huge thing for me. I've grown so disillusioned over the fact that I have been unable to really lose weight in many years. It needs to happen so I can be on the top of my game here. I owe it to God, my students, and you guys (my friends) to give things my all and I have definitely not been doing that.

Whew. That was a lot to spit out, but I already feel better. Please be thinking of me. Encourage me. Hold me accountable. I will do my best to do the same for you. Even if you don't know me, I appreciate you being part of this thing we have going on here.

I'm always excited for what the future holds in store for all of us. It's a great ride. I hope I haven't freaked you out with my spiritual talk, but this is me.

As far as the site problems go, we're on the road to somewhere better. Please be patient. Be excellent to each other. I'll be back to stable internet access on the 15th when I get back to Harbin. Peace.

posted by brendoman | 02/09/05| 11:24:31 am| Thoughts and Ideas|


Comment from: gringo [Visitor] · http://www.whoisgringo.brendoman.com

hey man, thanks for being real.

i’d really rather tell this to your face but for the sake of others who see this i’d like them to know as well.

i understand your bout with depression sort of i guess. my brother battled it for a while back in high school. and to top things off for school, next week i take a test to see if i have a “propensity towards ADD” because that’s what the counselor thinks my problem is. yeah, freaking ADD and i’m 25 years old.

i dunno man, i dont know what to say… my heart goes out to you. these are just words i know and they may not do much here… but i think about you at least everyday and i have your picture framed on my desk.

02/09/05 @ 12:29
Comment from: Roland [Visitor]

I love you, Brendan.

I have struggled with depression on and off over the years (especially in the last few months though, obviously), but not bad enough to need medication. A girl in the youth group last week asked me if it was a sin to be depressed. It was my great pleasure to tell her that no it is NOT, and this is an issue that the church has mismanaged for decades. Like anything else, it’s how you react to it that determines if you’re going to sin or glorify God.

You are choosing to glorify God. You remain my hero.

02/09/05 @ 13:29
Comment from: The Big Lowitzki [Visitor] · http://hippydave.brendoman.com

I love you too! And I barely know you. It has been great getting to know you over the last year. You are great. And you have been great to me.

And I think many of us around here understand the depression thing, at least at some level. I know that I hide in my blog at times, because it is easy to. But man…keep taking baby steps!

Keep serving!

02/09/05 @ 13:42
Comment from: Smiles [Visitor] · http://smiles.brendoman.com

I miss your “Holy Crap A Zombie Baby” look.

02/10/05 @ 00:08
Comment from: jeri [Visitor]

Gooooooooooooooooooooo Brendan!

I love you too. Please feel free to email, IM, or call me anytime you feel like you need someone to talk to!

02/10/05 @ 09:59
Comment from: jeri [Visitor]

…and I don’t know if it was on purpose, but props on the What About Bob? reference!

02/10/05 @ 10:00
Comment from: Grant [Visitor] · http://gsmithe.blogspot.com

Brendan man i have one thing to say to you and that is “You da Man”
Your doing work for God and look where it has taken you to China. China just wow. I look back at my life (I know I’m only 16 but still) and I totally see the hand of God working through me, then now after my wreck and seeing how “lucky” i am to be alive you can see God does look out for his children. So in closing keep up the faith and keep doing Gods work.Proud of ya man

02/10/05 @ 22:48
Comment from: Jon [Visitor]


God has great plans for your life. I believe that with all of my heart and seeing your transparency and honest is really awesome. Thanks for your website. Even though I’m older than most of you guys, and have had to play a role at times in the past that I didn’t like (with you, Honzo, Eric, etc.) I really enjoy reading and staying in touch with you through the website. It really is a community in a lot of ways and is something that I desire since I find myself so far from any sense of community that resembles home.

02/12/05 @ 08:26
Comment from: kevin [Visitor] · http://www.getok.net/kevin

Hey Brendo,
I know you less than Dave, but have had the pleasure of meeting you and it was meeting you that aided in part to my applying to go with the same organization you were with. It was the answer to the call and the genuousity (word??) that inspired me to apply. Thanks man.

02/13/05 @ 02:22