Tell us a little about yourself.
I received my Associates degree from Landmark College, Putney Vermont in 2012 and my BA from the University of Denver in 2015. I recently completed a year with the Vincentian Service Core West in Los Angeles, CA. and moved back to the Denver metro area. My music credits include DJ Beastmode’s Unleashed the Beast (2013), all of Khylan Jones' three singles as well as other artists signed with Core Five Media Group. I'm currently working on an EP that will be released later this year. My lifelong love of music has brought a lot of joy and fun to my life.
How has mental illness affected your life?
Struggling with bouts of depression as an adolescent and young man caused me to isolate and feel less than. I sought professional help and really looked at my strengths and skills and have worked hard to maintain a happy and productive life. Some days are easier than others. It has actually made me a very compassionate person. I try not to assume or make judgements about people as you never know what they may be going through. I have a strong sense of myself and continue to be intentional about becoming the best Brendan I can be; I have grown from the struggle.
Why did you want to be a part of This Is My Brave?
After seeing watching the 2016 spring This Is My Brave on you tube, I was struck the stories and and thought what a great opportunity to be part of the change. I am well aware that mental illness is not something people feel comfortable sharing, a lot of people who are suffering with it feel ashamed and judged. Depression is a serious, treatable medical issue. I do believe by increasing public awareness and educating others of this illness negative attitudes can change, little by little. So, This Is My Brave empowered me to share my unique perspective on living with disease.
What inspires you to stay mentally healthy?
My love of music has inspired me to really look at life, it has been a way I can truly express myself and it’s a gift of mine that I really appreciate. Through making music I have met many wonderful creative people and heard many stories of suffering and joy. It has helped me accept myself. Also, family, friends and faith have inspired me to stay the course, to be grateful for and enjoy all that I have.
What do you hope the audience takes away from the show?
I hope others are encouraged to talk about mental illness, share experience and know there are many ways to look at it. Also, I hope the audience enjoys the evening and leaves with a new understanding of how the stigmas of mental illness negatively affects people. Hopefully they will become part of the change!