To Brendan, Who Changed My Life

Hey there, B, my favorite former Lucasfilm employee. We talk about feels sometimes (okay... more than sometimes). This is one of those times.

We met when we were broken. Two bruised souls, fresh from relationships that we thought were our forevers, thoroughly banged up and entrenched in malaise.

We found our fire again. We found it in impulse and rashness and by totally overhauling our idea of normal.

You did it first.

I don't know if I would have done it first.

You quit your job with nothing but a dream in your immediate future. You are the person that people speak of in reverent, awe-filled tones, sending accolades to the one who dared to live his dreams. The person who rejects the norm and goes his own way. 

And yet people didn't say that to you when you quit. They chided your myopic choice, your financial irresponsibility, your lack of direction.

And you did it anyway.

I am honored to be by your side, watching it happen.

I watched you flail and I watched you, the writer, the alchemist of language, struggle to write a single word. 

I watched your anger over your ex's betrayal. I watched you try to give up hope.

I watched your malaise peak just as mine was starting to dissipate. I watched you find your words and find your passion.

You were my lifeline when I hurt more than I cared to find joy. You are the model for my courage to change everything and try something wholly different and far more me. And somehow, I was your inspiration when you no longer believed.

You risked everything that didn't matter to try to find the things that did. I watched you create your life, and knew that I could do the same. 

You made me believe that change is not something to fear when you're giving up misery. It isn't risk if the thing you're putting on the line is something you don't want. Fear of change, when a life that feels inherently wrong is the other option, is illogical.

Change hurts and you'll struggle and you'll hate everything about it, but it's beautiful and completely necessary.

Thank you for leading the way, for giving me the example that I needed to take a leap.

Thank you for changing my life.

Never grow up, never surrender,


(See what I did there? I did it in the format of a Letters To My Little Brother chapter. Even used the tagline. Aren't I clever.)

Brendan is my friend. He runs Boy With Cape and just published his first book: Letters To My Little Brother. I am very biased, but the book is very good and I think you should buy it. I know it says Matt McKinney. It's his persona / pseudonym.

Taylor Coil is traveling the world with Remote Year, living in 12 countries in 12 months, while working as a marketing manager. Follow along to read more philosophies on work, stories from the road, and general (mis)adventures. Sign up for the weekly email, or else read more from the blog.