Monday, January 31, 2011

Hope (Part 2)

Hey Guys,

So this is the next part of my road to recovery, it was a long road and one that I wish I did not have to travel but I did. Actually I am really glad that I travelled down it because it is slowly allowing me to grow and realize the important things in life which are to me friends, family and not letting things get you down (and God of course). But those are the biggest things in my life right now understanding the importance of family, friends and not letting things get me down. That is not what this post is about however it is more about what life was like in early November basically each one of these weeks is going to be a part of this Hope series and around December is going to transition into the road to recovery. So let me get started, November was a month were I started to regain a large amount of my confidence and hope which was nice. I started seeing a councillor and started to open up. Now I know this sounds shocking opening up to a councillor but realistically it takes a lot of time even someone who you are going to see for help to open up.

Opening up to Kathy was an interesting step (Kathy Morton is the person I see) and I would encourage anyone who is reading this if you are facing a problem see and councillor. I use to have this weird idea that it was wrong to get help but in actuality it is an amazing thing. The hope I gained in these weeks was that I was 'normal' through counselling I learned that a matter of fact depression is a normal thing. When depression sets on one of the first things you face is this idea that you are not normal. That you are the only person to face this issue as I have mentioned before but once I started talking to a councillor about it I she started to show me that it is normal. Especially in guys and girls my age now where expectations are at an all time high we push ourselves into depression. She explained to me that we set such high goals for ourselves that are actually unreachable or are so long term we do not see the means to getting there. Like take example of me these were my goals for 2010 and look at the difference in goals: 

I wanted to be CF, I wanted to have GPA of 3.6 cumulative, I wanted to have a business that would make 160K and profit 45K. These sounds similar until you break them down... 

I wanted to be CF not run or try but be and if I did not get that it would be a failure. Shocking part here I ended up not getting it and I was mad, upset and frustrated this entire time. Why because I wanted this and I thought it was something I deserved.

Right now my GPA is not great but to get my cumulative GPA to 3.6 means I needed a 4.0 each semester while taking 18 semester credits. On top of that being and RA then on TWUSA and titans soccer and this and that... you get the point?

And the business well I set these unreal expectations and every time I did not meat them I felt like a failure unto myself, to my boss and to my parents. I felt I let myself down because I did not accomplish the goal even though I was trying hard, I felt I let my boss down because he was investing time into me and I felt I let my parents down because they always support me. That was difficult.

Maybe it was a perfect storm in a way that cause my depression maybe in fact my depression was not just caused by a few simple factors but rather and continual thing. Could it be that my depression was started long before August but I never knew it? For as long as I could remember I have always push myself to be better, not just then the average person but everyone. I would push myself in school, push myself in sports and push myself in life. Something that contributed was that I started to lie about what I was able to do in order to make myself look better in the eyes of the people around me. Sad and pitiful I know but it was true I would lie about who I was so that I would look better. But that is another day.

This post is focused around what I was starting to tackle in counselling so I will get back to that. It was an new experience to start to open up about problems I have never talked about. I have this amazing character trait which is when things go down hill you stop talking and work through it. Well that only works for a little bit before things start to go in a downward spiral. I started to face these unbelievably deep issues in my own personal life. Like these and ask these question to yourself too:

1) Why do I feel I need to prove myself to everyone??
2) Who am I proving myself too?
3) Why do I believe I am not good enough in certain aspects?
4) Why do I think I am letting people down?

These next questions are the ones I had to face about depression they are a little bit different but kind of similar:

1) Why do I feel I am not good enough at all?
2) Who do I think I need to be?
3) Why do I consider myself a failure?

The questions are similar but those last three really hit to the key points of my depression which was interesting and I will answer them sometimes this week a little bit more about them. These post will be a little bit more what was my depression in the deepest aspect rather then just what happened. So to summarize what I have been talking about this whole time and to try and bring my thoughts to a conclusion this week in November I was starting to understand that I am normal and start to understand why I thought these thoughts. What was the cause behind them? My hope that I gained this week was really understanding that I am getting help that there is an answer to these unbelievably hard questions that I was facing. I challenge anyone who is reading this that if you are going through some tough times ask yourself a few of these question, ask yourself and talk about the answer do not just dwell on them. Furthermore if there is something your dealing with that you cannot warp your head around it ask for help from a councillor they love to listen, heck its what they want to do (by the way for TWU students 25$). That is all for now.

Goodbye for now,
Christian Sawka

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Slipping back into Depression

Hey Guys,

So today was the first time since about late December last year that I had a relapse into depression. It was an interesting thing as some of you know and as some of you have figured out by now for most of October, November and December I was on anti-depressants. Well at the start of this semester I stopped cold turkey. 100% I just stopped taking them and have not looked back at all. The thing is though I have to be extremely careful on days like these where some factor causes me to slip back into a micro-depression. Basically what happened was that that I have been suspended for 2 games and then after I got we had our TWUSA retreat so I did not play. So this has been my first game back and because I cannot make all the practices because of classes but to compensate I have been working out, playing a few different sports and working on different aspects of my game. I have been looking forward to this game for a long time and was really excited. Unfortunately as time went on it turns out I did not get to play for more then 10 minutes and every time I got on I made mistakes, after mistakes, after mistakes. Which was hard to get use to because I hate failing and letting people down. After my ten minutes of game time I was put back in with 3 minutes left and the first thing I did was screw up. The coach took me out right away and I was extremely pissed off and distraught. I ended up leaving the Field because with everything I was just frustrated about everything.

This is where my micro-depression started because I started beating myself up, getting angry and then what happened was I ended up just not wanting to do anything the rest of my day. I sat around for the rest of the day fixated upon everything that had happened and could not get my mind off of this. As I have mentioned before my mind is my worst enemy it can easily control me and it is difficult for me to turn it off. Well what happened was after a while of sitting around and waiting I ended up just not wanting to do anything, I just wanted to be alone and not talk to anyone. It was interesting I started to fall into the old thing I use to do which was just wait and hope someone would message me. Luckily this time I can notice a few things and started to actually text people. But it was still a scary realization that maybe I have not conquered depression yet maybe the words I actually said are true... depression is not small thing that passes quickly. It is rather a bigger thing that takes a long time to conquer over. 

Does this mean I have to live in fear of something setting off my depression well no, not at all. Rather this is something that I can learn from and grow through. I am able to recognize the issues when they are coming this was just something I have to learn from. Sadly it is not always my favorite lesson to learn but it is a lesson none the lesson. I am still to this day finding ways to grow through all these difficulties. I am one of those people that has to learn from my mistakes I have to make a mistake before I can learn. So my hope and prayer is that this is the only time I have to learn this lesson I do not want to have to go through a micro depression again it was not fun and luckily I was able to snap it relatively quickly. That is all I really wanted to share about today was that I am still struggling with depression from time to time but overall it is improving and I will be talking about my journey in my "Hope" series.  I am working through it and hopefully through this blog, and from sharing I will be able to work through my struggles.

Thank you for the support for anyone who is reading this, thanks for the people who have commented and thanks for the people who have messaged or emailed me. You are the people helping me through this.

Goodbye for now,
Christian Sawka

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Servant Leadership

Hey Guys,

I have been faced with an interesting decision that is challenging me in many different ways. The basis of this is servant leadership and what it comes down to is this where can I serve the community that I live in the most. I have talked about running for president, I have actually submitted my application and have started to gain some support. BUT here is the dilemma what if there is someone I believe in my heart is a 'better' candidate maybe not right now but with their character and such will be the better candidate for the job? It is an interesting idea that I am trying to work through and understand. I felt that I should run based upon my motives, my intentions and what I wanted to accomplish overall but does that mean I have to be a certain position to accomplish those. I made it a goal of mine that I was going to run for TWUSA president as I talked about in my goal post (Goals) and the deeper goal that I describe was that I wanted to serve TWU and I did not want to live with any regrets. Never again do I want to look back and think I should have done this, I should have done that but would this be a scenario that I could look at and say I am glad I did that? Before you continue to read this please read my blog post about intentions because it will allow you to understand what my thoughts are and what I am thinking through right now. 

First, what is a student leader...

The term "servant-leadership" first became popularized by the book, Servant As Leader, written by Robert Greenleaf in 1970. Greenleaf described servant-leadership as: 
The servant-leader is servant first servant... It begins with the natural feeling that one wants to serve, to serve first. Then conscious choice brings one to aspire to lead. He or she is sharply different from the person who is leader first, perhaps because of the need to assuage an unusual power drive or to acquire material possessions. For such it will be a later choice to serve after leadership is established. The leader-first and the servant-first are two extreme types. Between them there are shadings and blends that are part of the infinite variety of human nature.
The difference manifest itself in the care taken by the servant-first to make sure that other people's highest priority needs are being served. The best test, and difficult to administer , is: do those served grow as persons;do they, while being served, become healthier, wiser, freer, more autonomous, more likely themselves to become servants?
- Robert Greenleaf
This is the part that is just shaking me up is really 100% because I said to everyone my intentions are pure and they still are but I started to feel this temptation that I should run because wouldn't it be great to be the 'president'? After the meeting I went up to this friend of mine, someone I look up to and some I attempt to live like and said that I would not run against him because I believed he would do a better job. Now it is time to put my action where my words are. My temptation is to continue to run and just let my pride and competitive side take control but I have spent this last month trying to fix my life and I am not going to stop here.

If I want to call myself a servant-leader then I sure as HELL cannot go against what I have said. A servant is someone who wants to serve and wants to serve first. This quote rattles my bones because listen to the words it is saying this 'leader' is SHARPLY DIFFERENT from the other person. This person is servant first instead of leader first. I preached to you guys and to everyone that the students were my ultimate goal and purpose for wanting to run and I need to stand behind that don't I? Please anyone who is reading this affirm me or tell me I am a idiot because I want to make sure I am doing right before my friends, family and you guys. Student leadership at this school means the absolute world to me I know no other life than service giving back. I stand behind the importance of building servant leadership and will stand behind it till the day I die. People are and should always be the most important reason we run for leadership. If that is not your intention it is better to back out now and re-evaluate your life. And leadership position that is especially one of service needs to be a servant leadership position.

If anyone is reading this I encourage everyone to apply for student leadership position, do it! Just make sure your first intention is serving the people instead of adding to your resume. Someone this weak questioned my intention saying I just wanted to add this title to my resume. I turned to them and said this 'Yes, I want this title because when I own my own business that is ultimately what is going to define me'. I am going to walk into a business I want to do business with and say this 'oh you should hire me because I was the TWUSA president'. A title does not define who you are and should never define who you are. I repeat a title DOES NOT DEFINE WHO YOU ARE. I know that might be a shock to some people but it is true a title does not make you any better then the next person. I cannot help but think of this YouTube video where he is talking about business cards and at the 45 second mark he makes these remarks about titles. He says "Wow I know companies that make 10,000$ a year and the guy is a CEO". That is about how highly I think of titles sometime that we fixate ourselves around them. Yes there is some stuff that comes along with titles. It allows you to build contacts, to makes some changes and all this BUT what keeps you there and what keep the respect of the people around you is who YOU are not what your title is. Respect is something to be gained not given to someone in title. Therefore go out and earn the respect of the people around you by what you do. 

Here is the 'lesson' for today, and the one I am learning is a title does not define who you are as a character just because I may not be president does not mean I cannot make a difference. Also just because I might become president it does not mean that, that should define me or that I should demand the respect of people. You have to earn the respect of the people around you by one simple thing saying what you are going to do and doing exactly what you say. People will respect the person more who says he cannot do something then the person who promise to do something and does not deliver. Lastly evaluate your heart at all times and understand your intentions for your actions. A few years ago I would never caught that temptation in my intentions, a few months ago there would have been a chance and right now it was still difficult but I am glad I could see that those competitive thoughts were passing through my mind instead of my original goal. Serve the students, serve the community and build it up. I have no finalize my decision because the other person has not finalize his but when he does I intend on quickly standing where I can best serve. I truly believe it would be better to serve under someone else if that means the students could be better served overall.

Goodbye for now,
Christian Sawka

Friday, January 28, 2011


Hey guys,

Someone mentioned on my blog about to deal with depression is World of Warcraft and I am not here to bash or say that is wrong but actually to say that, that is a good thing but also to share my story of my addiction to video games. So it started in grade 11 I believe and continued through grade 12 it was when there was some difficult times in my life that one day I will share about. But this addiction was pretty insane at the peak of my addiction I was playing nearly 80 hours a week, this includes playing, studying and researching. Yes I know that sounds ridiculous but I am going to go through and talk about my experience.

First off I began playing socially with friends just once or twice a week. It was nothing big at all and I started to get connected into this environment that was created by this game a sub-culture in a way. When my life was all together I barely played, I played when I had time and it was never anything more then this. But when there started to be some hardship in my life I began to try ways to escape reality. I wanted to do anything to get away from the struggles I was going through. I was avoiding conflict and fighting. Well I might as well explain what went on or else this story does not make sense. In my grade 11 year I had some difficult times and especially I started hanging out with this certain girl now nothing ever happened between us but things got sure blown out of proportion. So me and this girl were hanging out and became kind of close and being the level of maturity I was I started messing feelings with friendship. That is never a great thing and it ended up getting me into a lot of trouble. So what happened in January of my grade 11 year was I got accused of sexual harassment. Now let me place a disclaimer here all 'charges' and 'accusations' were dropped and everything was let go in 3 days. Now looking back I got accused of sexual harassment because of putting my arm around and giving a hug to a girl. I am not going to share her personal life as to what happened to cause me do engage in this form of physical activity but needless to say I saw it as justified. The unfortunate part was that after this when the issue was suppose to stay an absolute secret a few people let it slip and I started getting know around my school a some form of a sexual attacker. Yea fun I know it is great to be accused of that going through your high school. Well this became the premise of my addiction to escaping reality.

World of Warcraft and Video games became my addiction became the forefront of my life. It was my way to get away from the reality that is in front of me. To this day it is something that I still struggle with and I start to see it coming. When I was going through depression I started to find myself wanting to play more and more video games. On top of video games I found myself wanting to escape reality and it was a scary thing. A place where you can become someone else without and consequence is a scary reality. My addiction is not as simple as I would like it believe it was an addiction to world of warcraft but rather it was an addiction to have a place where I could go where there was no consequences, no reality and nothing I had to ever be concerned about. These types of games create a sub-world, I felt more attached to the world that I played in then the world I actually lived in. I know at this point people are going to say 'wow that is ridiculous' or 'why didn't you just stop playing'. Well the matter of the fact was this I enjoyed the life I had created more then the life I was living. That is a scary thing to have an addiction too well minus drugs, alcohol and pornography but being addicted to escaping reality is a difficult thing.

I believe that in some ways we all have our addictions this is what mine happens to be. I do not pretend to be an expert in this situation to really know what addiction is like but I can offer this peace of advice. Learn quickly where you struggle, it took me almost two years of my life until I realized that I struggled with escaping reality. Just a question to anyone reading this, what is your addiction? What do you struggle with that you tend to lean towards when times get tough? I have heard of Ice cream, work etc... mine is that when times get stressful I like to escape through video games or such things like that. I am fearful of my addiction and my hopes are that you do not have to fear your struggles.

Goodbye for now,
Christian Sawka

Thursday, January 27, 2011


Hey Guys,

Lust is one of those difficult things that we face now especially in this age. Especially being a 20 year old in this generation it is almost forced upon us that we should be lustful after woman. You know the type society points out to idealize after the skinny girl whom is 'perfect'. It is probably the most difficult thing as a teenage guy to deal with is being shown everyday the type of girl you should like, the type of girl you should go after, and the type of girl we should sought after. Dale talked about this idea of lust a little bit tonight when I was at the Rec Service dinner and it made me think about just how prevalent lust is our society and within my life. He made this example that if only we could could be blind for a while and just listen to voice, to hear peoples voice and learn to like them for who they are. Well unfortunately we do not live in a society yet were we can just go blind and it is awfully hard to just to get to know someone without lusting after their physical appearance.

This is something I personally struggle with and I know that I am not the only person this is something common that we as people face. The impact that it had in my life was actually the worse during my depression because I was having such a difficult time in my faith and felt like I was moving away from God. During that time I found my self starting to objectify woman more, idealize and always just look at the best looking people I could find. It was a weird transition for me because often I have been a man that is about personality and usually do not find those 'most' attractive woman attractive at all. But during my depression where I was struggling in life I found myself becoming closer and closer and closer to society and that lustful nature. It was a weird feeling I found myself lusting after girls all the time which was a strange new concept for me (I know that sounds weird but I am not lying here I am actually being quiet honest). Trying to understand what it is like to all of the sudden objectifying woman is interesting and rather weird. 

Even now as my depression is starting to fade away I am still finding myself struggling with this idea of lust and lusting after physical contact. Shocker of the day that my love language is not physical contact at all. Anyone who knows me personally or believes the 'stories' that have been told about me should be somewhat surprised about this. I am not a person who needs physical touch but lately with this idea of lush I have been feeling like I should be more physical. It is something that I have to remind myself everyday and also have people who keep my accountable to not be physical at all. And I have failed twice this semester thus far and it is difficult because every time I fail the more and more it starts to make me feel like I've let myself down. The first time I let my lust take control I did not feel all that bad there was some regret but a little of me was like the typical guy saying yea way to go... not the way to act by the way. The second I was physical with some there was a lot more regret a lot more feeling that I have let my morals and what I said I would stand for down. And maybe that is me becoming more and more the person I once was the person who did not enjoy being lustful for or looking a woman purely for their physical looks. But like all things it takes time... This is something I have struggled with for a while and I do have my ups and downs I am just hoping that I will continue to learn how to stay away from a lustful nature.

This is just something that has been on my mind for a while about my struggle with lust... there is no lesson or overall improvement just my thoughts. Maybe here is a lesson... You cannot deal with your lust alone you need the support of people around you, and you need to remind yourself that it is not the greatest thing to give into lust. No it is not wrong to be attracted to someone but lusting after someone is totally different and is something you need to be fearful of because that is when you will do something you regret! Trust me I have gone through this before many times!

Goodbye for now,
Christian Sawka

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Fear of Trust

Something I have learned over years is that I have some extreme trust issues. I have an extremely hard time trusting people. I tend to start off trusting people 100% and then as soon as something goes wrong I tend to stop trusting them right away and actually lose the trust I had for them. Even with my closest friends I have started to notice is that I stop trusting people when I become closer to them. If you look at my life there are very few people that often have been there for longer then a year minus one close friend simply because the closer I become with people the more fearful I become of being hurt. I have this massive FEAR of TRUST. So what does it actually mean to trust someone? For me it means to actually tell someone about your struggles, your fears and what you are trying to improve on. Sounds simple right? Well that is actually my biggest fear in life is that I will have to one day trust someone with everything about me. One of my greatest qualities is my ability to quickly trust people and share about my life but my greatest weakness is that I have the absolute fear of being close to people. 

Where did these problems start? I honestly do not know where they began I have a loving family, have has some awesome friends and have grown up around great examples. I am starting to figure out where do my trust issues stem from I am starting to see that I do not know. When going through my past it is a difficult thing but I know that sometimes the closest people I feel like I have been hurt the most by them. Yet the thing is I do not know if it was there fault or if it was my own fear of trusting. When you feel like someone has let you down you always have a choice do you forgive and work through it? or do you do what I have done over the years is just believe that they are untrustworthy?

How does one overcome the fear of trust? This is something I am working through during my depression I hit my ultimate low for my trust issues. I hated trusting people and I am still working on regaining my ability to trust people.  During my depression it was interesting, well interesting is a bad work but it was an extreme challenge. To actually start to trust people was a challenge all in itself. Anyone who is reading this who has trust issue themselves listen to this next part... Trusting is a great thing, being open is a great thing but you still have to be careful when trusting people. Start small instead of what I do, start by trusting people will small things and build up the trust until you feel comfortable. Trust is a relationship in itself like all relationships you need to start with a little bit of trust and then slowly build it up more and more. Do not be afraid to trust people but also DO NOT over trust right away. There is a level of being open and there is another thing about being emotionally naked (basically meaning sharing way way too much way to fast).

I wish I had the answer with for what the cure for the fear of trust is but I am still struggling with it. I trust people and yet do not trust people everyday. I often do not know the answer but I offer this advice, start small and work your way up. For me it is slowly working that I am learning to trust the 'right people' what I mean by that is people you feel comfortable with, and people you know who will not just be there to trust you too but also push you when you feel like backing away. Trust is the most fearful thing in my life! I hate trusting people because it creates and ultra sense of vulnerability. Think about it and maybe you can relate to having trouble trusting people.

Goodbye for now,
Christian Sawka

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Hope (Part 1)

Hey Guys,

So as I talked about in my first post about depression and the first post I have ever written I promised that this blog would not just a negative thing that every post I was not going to write about depression that a matter of fact I was also going to talk about my battle through depression. Well this is the next step in depression I do not know how long it is going to be but it this next series is going to be the uphill battle to start fighting off depression. It is first going to sound negative because at this point (SPOILER ALERT: read my depression pages/blogs before reading this) I just hit the lowest point of my depression and life so anything from now on is going to be slightly better. First off I would like to thank anyone who gave me feedback on my last post it really has inspired me to continue to share and be open about my life and struggles.

So now onto where I was trying to go. After that day things became better but also became worse in some ways too. Lets start with where things became worse, I had lost all my motivation at this point and I know I have mentioned that before but seriously I want you to imagine this or just understand.... 

12-1am is NCIS
1am-2am in Bones
2-3am is House
3-4am in NCIS again
4-5:15am is Score morning

This was every night for me at times I had even lost the motivation to eat. As scary as that is I lost a considerable amount of weight during this depression. I lived off approximately 300$ in food for 4 months that includes eating out I would tentatively say I was eating next to nothing all the time. This is how low my motivation got it got to the point where I did have motivation to sleep or even to get out of bed to go to classes. I looked retrospectively and can only imagine what my room-mates thought when they would wake up at 8am and see me passed out on the couch almost everyday. 

My insomnia also at this point hit an extreme high or low depending on how you look at it. I had no problem staying up but the worse is when I would lay in bed for HOURS on end just trying and praying that I could get to bed. Have you ever thought about why you could not sleep? Imagine that but add it why should you sleep? what you had to do tomorrow? if it was worth doing? and then thinking why am I thinking instead of sleeping? I have this great strength and weakness in that my mind can process things extremely fast and is always working problems and situations out. 24/7 it is working to try and solve the friend situation or the conflict. But when it comes to sleep it is my biggest enemy. How do you shut your brain down if anyone has any suggestions please contact me I am almost open to anything at this point! You know your insomnia is bad when you begin to debate if it is worth getting up at watching TV for a few hours or to sit and wait for a few more and hope you fall asleep! My insomnia was getting worse at this point and had no signs of improvements.

This next part is going to be the most shocking thing in this blog today... that hardest thing about getting better for me was admitting that I was in fact depressed, telling my close friends, telling my family, and even telling my councillor was incredibly hard. The reason I think this might be shocking is because your reading this now. You are reading that I am not willing to be open but I am sharing it. It was as simple as 3 months ago I was terrified to open up anything about my life and that is the reason I am posting is to share those struggles. I was just starting to open up at this point and this was unbelievably rewarding the first time you tell your friend a secret like this it just changes you. I challenge anyone who is reading this that if you are still holding onto something personal share it! You do not need to tell the world but tell someone! It will honestly be the quickest road to improvement. Being open about my life finally has allowed me to accept my past, understand it and work though it. This was the first step of 'hope' for me that is the reason I am naming this part HOPE because honestly that was all that I had left to live for was this hope of something better a hope of change coming and hope of transformation. 

The last part is the joy of getting help ACKNOWLEDGINGHOPE. So I leave you with this if there is something you are struggling with share it with someone close to you, seek help and support through this and above all do not lose hope know that you are not alone in your struggle someone else around you is, has gone or will go through the same thing.

Goodbye for now,
Christian Sawka

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Suicide (Depression Phase 4)

Hey guys,

I was at Sunday Night Alive and it gave me the final push to actually write about this. For the longest time I have been super fearful about sharing this next part about my depression because it is still the most painful wound (fugitively). It was last Sunday where God laid me out and showed me that in fact I had not forgiven myself for the thoughts and actions I went though. It was probably one of the hardest days that I have had to go through where I actually felt 100% alone that there was no one to turn to, that there was absolutely no one to talk to at all. I am going to be talking about the time my depression hit its lowest point the night I came the closest to taking my life.

As I talked about in my last post about depression I mention that my thoughts had started to control my mind that I was completely unable to focus on anything else. I talked about a soccer game where I could not even play because my mind was fixated on 'stuff' as I think I put it. Well my mind that night was fixated on whether life itself was worth living. It was the scariest point of my life where I sat there hoping that someone would care, someone would talk to me and the God would even feel remotely close. Nothing happened after my soccer game I help teeter drop somethings off at the Lower Cafe Storage and then I sat there in my car in tears wonder if anyone would care if I was gone, would I even be missed and is there a point to continuing on. I believe that night I text 5-6 people and one person respond. Sadly it had been someone I had treated poorly and the level of connection was not as close as hoped but it was enough inspiration to get me home. I drove home texting, wondering and just trying to get my mind off things.

When I got home I sat there on our couch and just sat there hopeless and in many ways lifeless my mind was fixated on this discussion as to whether life was worth living. If you guys get to the point be careful do not try to be in the position I was. I sat there for what seemed like weeks time moved by so slow in actuality it was only 6 hours but I sat there for six hours debating if there was a reason to continue on and to continue on with this burden and pain. I lived in a house with 4 other guys and I was just sitting hoping one would come home and just recognize that in face something was seriously wrong. There was nothing. I sat there all night hoping and losing hope all the while. When you get to this point all you have left is hope because your logical side kicks in and for me at least justified taking my life. Let you take me through my thought process it went something like this. 

What do you have to live for? 
Well my friends, my family, and all the things I am involved in.
Well where are they now?
Well my friends are busy.... well my family is still there and well I could be replaced
What the the point in continuing this pain?
Well there is hope, someone will get back to me someone will care....

This was my thoughts now I know I probably should not be putting these on the Internet but that it what it was like for me to go through this debate of suicide. To this day I flinch when I hear that word or I even hear people talk about it. You have no idea how real it is until it is your life. Until you are the one going through it. Now there is a happy ending at least I mean I am still here to write about it right? Sadly there was one lower point I got to which was actually getting off the couch and going towards the kitchen. I stood there and waited, I got scared, I got nervous, and more then anything I sat there and debated more and more as to why I should. You know you have to be careful when you start debating why you should do something like this instead of why you should not. I got to close that I started to convince myself that I should just do, that I should stop being so scared and that I did not even have the guts to follow through with something.........

Some how I made the decision not to though I still do not know to this day what stopped me. I got to the point in my thinking that there was absolutely no reason to continue living anymore. I had successfully convince myself that there was not point in continuing life itself. I really hope anyone who is reading this has never felt that feeling and will never feel that feeling. It is not a place I wish upon anyone. When you lose all your hope what is actually left to carry on? When you sit there any are convince God is not there for you? that your friends do not care about you? that nothing is important enough to say around for and you lose all your hope...? What is left? I still to this day do not know but maybe for once being a little bit fearful was a bad thing. Maybe being scared of the unknown actually did scare my life. All I know is that after that day things started to get better, things started to improve. But that has so far been the lowest point in my depression and the hardest thing I have had to go through before.

ANY WAY that people are there. My challenge for you is this make sure to really ask the people around you how they are doing do not overlook stuff or pass it off as nothing you never know what could be really going on.

Goodbye for now,
Christian Sawka

Prove vs Bends

Hey Guys,

This is something my mentor shared we me and something that has been really coming into my life as to late as I posted about talking about real friends and the importance of them. This goes alone with it. He talks that there are two types of people people who prove and people who bend. Let me explain what each of them are. Mind you these are a little bit more of my interpretation and what I have taken from them.


This is how I am starting to view this the type of person who is the bends is someone who blames everyone else for their mistake. They will pass off any problem that is it someone else's problem. For example they will be that person at an event who says this event sucks because the person in charge did not plan it well, or because it is not what they want to do. They will blame the person in charge instead of making the most of their situation. Next is the excuses this is a big one this is someone who will make an excuse for something they always do. THIS IS MY WEAKNESS. I will always say stuff like I was tired, I had a lot going on, I was just frustrated, I did not mean to do that, that was no my intention, or It was not meant like that. Do those sound familiar? It tends to be something in our society that we make excuses for everything we do so that we do not have to take responsibility (start to notice how BENDS and PROVE relate okay?) Next is neglecting they will neglect all ownership or something they are in charge of. This will be the person who will say stuff like this will be a fair amount of work or it will be difficult. They will do anything to neglect anything that could be hard work or responsibility. Next is my favourite people who dismiss they dismiss anything they can. Oh I do not want to do that, that was not me, well that is not exactly what happened or it is not that big of deal. And last is this idea of SULKING! I hate sulkers (disclaimer this is not always true just people who are true sulkers) these are people who just find something wrong in EVERYTHING ALL THE TIME they will sulk. Aw this sucks, this event is boring... sigh... there are so many examples just sulking about everything like that there life is impossible all the time. It just bugs me that when people actually go through stuff they feel bad sharing or burdening people because of people like this.

These are the type of people you do not want to be and this does not mean that sometimes we all make excuses or blame but we need to aim to be PROVE people. It is when these become your answer all the time that it is a problem. Think to yourself do you want to be around someone who is always going to make and excuse for everything? or blame you for every mistake? or sulk when something does not go their way?


SPOILER ALERT! this is the type of person you want to be! First off is pride and this does not mean ego or being arrogant this means taking pride in what you do. I will describe this and you will know someone right now who fits this description. Pride in this situation is for someone who just takes absolutely pride in what they do, they take complete control of it and do not just do something half-heartily. These are those passionate people who when you see them do something think oh man I WISH I could be as passionate about something as they are. They will be the people who will just take so much pride in what they are doing and will not back down. Think about it for a second... think of someone who takes pride in their faith? their sport? their school work? their life! I am pretty sure you can think of someone. Next is responsibility this is my favourite one because it is easy to start and spot these people, people who take responsibility when they make a mistake. These people will always shock you because they will be the first tell you I MESSED UP, I made a mistake and boy do you respect these people so much. Next is ownership where someone takes ownership for their action similar to responsibility but more with actions. They will take ownership of what they are saying, how they are acting and how they are making people feel. These are the type of people that make you feel care about because they take ownership of what they are saying and effect they are having. Next is value this is people who find value in every action they are doing. Every job they do they find the utter value in what they are doing it could be as simple as serving, or talking but they find value in these things. Lastly is empowerment which are types of people who just inspire you to do more, to take on task, to take on responsibility and who help you along the way.

These are the type of people you always want to be around because they make you want to be like them. Truthfully and it is not a bad thing at all wanting to be like those type of people. These people are usually the ones around you in leadership, the ones that have all the friends that you want to be friends with and most importantly the people you respect and aspire to be like. I have people in my life that are like that to me that I wish I could be like them in so many ways. I never wish to have someone else's life but some qualities they have would be great. That is all I really need to say about that.

So when my mentor shared this with me he said this too. WHO ARE YOU? and it just sends a shiver down your back because you get this huge description of what the good and bad types are. Then I just sat there and realized ah ha! I am not perfect one of the biggest things I struggle with still is make excuses and dismissing. I will admit 100% I make excuses for my actions sometimes well often that I will make up something. Why I did not do well, oh I was tired, I was out talking to much last night, or some lame excuse like that. Instead of taking responsibility for my actions I tend to make excuses which is a horrible thing but it is something I do. Also I still dismiss things and play them off like oh it was nothing this one I am really starting to work on but I still do this from time to time. I dismiss my actions or what I say like it was nothing. Oh that was no big deal. But what I have learned when going through all this depression and such you cannot dismiss these small things like they are nothing or they will build up and just rip right through you. Like it did for me I dismissed my action and my excuses for them and eventually they broke me down from the inside out. They tore me apart. Going through depression was so tough for this I was in between a bends and a prove person but when the depression hit the bends. I was blaming people for what I was going through, make an excuses for every action, neglecting all responsibility, dismissing the affect I was having on people and just sulking all the time for anything that would not go my way. By no means am I perfect now or am I the perfect person but I aim each day to become that PROVE person.

Here is my challenge for anyone reading this... WHO ARE YOU? take the time to really look into your life and figure out who you are and be honest with yourself. I think this is going to be one of the first times I am really going to try and challenge you (who ever reads this) take the time to consider who you are and who you want to become? It is good once and a while to self-reflect so take the time to reflect on this and figure out what is going on? That is challenge #1 the next one is who do you really want in your life? This does not mean that if anyone is not a perfect prove person kick them out of your life but this means who are the type of people you want shaping your life. Do you want people who prove or bends? It is a interesting question and this is the first blog post of mine check out my post about the importance of good friends because this is another thing along with that. What are the type of people you want shaping your life?

Feel free to respond to this, comment, message me or post something on my facebook or get into contact with me in anyways if you want to talk. But just take the time to figure out who you are.

Goodbye for now,
Christian Sawka

P.S. Comment section has been fixed feel free to comment and say what ever you would like.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Gossiping or Talking

It is and interesting and peculiar idea. What is the difference between gossiping and talking at what point do you cross that point. When you talk with people you always have to be mindful of exactly you are saying and to the audience your talking to. I go to a school who has an extremely small community everyone knows everyone. There is a joke that goes around TWU that the fastest way to get information around the school is telling your neighbor. People talk or do people gossip?

I am probably one of the worst for this and something I want to try and improve this. It is and interesting idea what is the difference between talking and gossiping. The thing I am starting to find out is that I absolutely love hearing everything and gaining information. The difference in my mind is this gossiping is when you are trying to bring someone down and talking is when you are trying to understand. Gossip is often used as a negative word and it is a negative thing! Gossip is something especially in small communities that is always around but as and individual I need to watch what I say and do. We can only control what we as people do we need to remember to talk to understand instead of gossip and bring people down. It is something I struggle with but the bigger thing I am learning is that only I can control me and that is the only thing I can do. So just think to yourself what do you spend more time doing talking or gossiping? Do you bring people down or try to understand the situation? I am guilty of gossiping and such but I can only watch my actions. 

Goodbye for now,
Christian Sawka

All done from the iPhone haha

Friday, January 21, 2011


I posted something on facebook today that I got a few texts, calls and facebook messages about. It went like this, "And that was my "graveyard" where my intentions died." I was making a reference to this place I know on campus called the "hobbit house" which is something my dorm and me worked on in first year. This place was going to be amazing it was going to be this house on campus where we could go be men and have our mature hang out spot. I now call it politely my graveyard. This graveyard reference is from a great movie called remember the titans where Denzal Washington leads his team down this path running all the way to Gettysburg graveyard where men gave their lives. He gives a speech there: "This is where they fought the battle of Gettysburg. Fifty thousand men died right here on this field, fighting the same fight that we are still fighting among ourselves today. This green field right here, painted red, bubblin' with the blood of young boys. Smoke and hot lead pouring right through their bodies. Listen to their souls, men. I killed my brother with malice in my heart. Hatred destroyed my family. You listen, and you take a lesson from the dead. If we don't come together right now on this hallowed ground, we too will be destroyed, just like they were. I don't care if you like each other of not, but you will respect each other. And maybe... I don't know, maybe we'll learn to play this game like men." ( Now I know this is different then the leadership I have lead, there was no blood and murder but their was wrong intentions, I did not lead my dorm, my company or my life correctly. In a way you could call this my apology but this is more of my reflection to learn where I went wrong.

I will first give you the details of what went 'wrong' as my year as RA (Resident Assistant). I was really excited my first year I got RA I remember running down the hall had giving a huge hug to the closest RA I could find. Then began this planning of what I was going to do, what I was going to create, and the dorm I wanted. Can you start to see where things went wrong? As the summer was over and I began my second year at TWU I start to try and create this LEGACY for myself I wanted to do something that would forever be remember at Trintiy. Well this hobbit house may have been that legacy that I wanted to create. I want to be remember for this great and awesome person, I wanted to be known throughout generations, and I wanted to be the best RA ever! Well now if you have not picked up on where I failed as an RA well here it is.. I lead a dorm in a way for my own self-interest not all the time but enough that it negatively effected the dorm. There are many examples of this either through dorm activities, campus wide competitions or anything like that I lead a dorm of guys to create a sense of self-worth for me.

Now last night I went back and stood back at this hobbit house and it was a sight I will tell you that. Somewhere just off Trinity campus there is a 6 foot deep hole that is 12 feet by 10 feet. We as a dorm cleared it out there was a lot of great memories there either pulling down some trees or burning roots or just digging we spent a lot of time there. But like a few things this faded away as school start people became less interested, people did not really care anymore and fights began to happen. My dorm began to fall apart and I  tried to be this strong leader but my intentions were wrong. I knew what to say, I knew the right event to plan and I knew how to inspire people to do activities. But my INTENTIONS were off the mark they were not focused on being a servant leader they were focused on creating my own amazing self image. As I stood there upon that ground as I was talking to a friend I told her this and I said that this was my graveyard this is where my intentions died. Not in a good way but my intentions died my good intentions I became so fixated on making a name for myself that I lost focus on the people around me and what leader they needed. I failed my troops as I will call them I let them down I led them into battle with the sole intentions of trying to make myself look better instead of putting them first. I did not do this all the time as I mentioned before I was not a complete failure but I did fail them.

T.S. Eliot Wrote:
We are the hollow men
We are the stuffed men
Leaning together
Headpiece filled with straw. Alas!
Our dried voices, when
We whisper together
Are quiet and meaningless
As wind in dry grass
Or rats' feet over broken glass
In our dry cellar

Shape without form, shade without colour,
Paralysed force, gesture without motion;

Those who have crossed
With direct eyes, to death's other Kingdom
Remember us -- if at all -- not as lost
Violent souls, but only
As the hollow men
The stuffed men.

The reason I went back to this spot was because my TWUSA boss said to me that make sure that regardless of what leadership I do next year that my intentions where in the right place. I could not help remember and accept that I have failed as a leader. I have to consider what I am going to do next year. As I have mentioned in previous postings that I am going to run for TWUSA President there still is a chance I will and I probably will still but I am going to solidly evaluate my intentions. It only takes one time to learn (hopefully) but for me it took my once as an RA to understand the importance of intentions that you can cause conflict and fighting but going in to PROVE something for yourself. It has been an absolutely crazy week for me this week going up and down and hopefully I have some more time to post about these days over the weekend but on Monday night I had two talks regarding intentions. Two people came to talk to me about different issues but both came with different intentions. 

The first person sought me down and met with me and talked with me for a while about my life and then confront the issue at hand. I left the house I was living at for first semester to move on-campus. My intentions were pure not to hurt anyone or cause pain but to look out for my personal health and safety. This friend approached me because I caused conflict I caused a rift and he came with the intention not to make me feel negative about myself or to bring me down but to say it happened but you are still cared about and that we are friends. I honor and respect this person because of what he did he came to me in a personal manner but not in anyway to cause harm or to say I am weak or to point out my weakness or how I let him down but that although this happened we are still friends and apart of the discipleship group.

The second person made sure to tell me that we needed to talk to me and that is was of the absolute importance. As we sat down he gave me this disclaimer, I am coming to you as a friend, as a brother in Christ, as your boss (not my actual boss) and as a member of TWUSA. Right then and there I was worried because no one is a strong enough person to come from all those angles and have a completely unbiased opinion. Now he started off talking about his concerns about me running for president and had some very valid concerns such as that I am still working through my personal issue, that I need to focus on my own character development and they were great but things started to take a shift. He started mentioning things such as how I have let down people, I have failed as a leader before, how I failed as a member of TWUSA and as how I do not deserve to run. If anyone has figured out who these people are I would ask that you respect them and not say anything. But after we talked all I could think about was what where his intentions behind this for the first guy it was to fix the friendship and improve upon it. For the second guy was his intentions in the right mind was it for his purpose to see me do well or for me not to run against him? I do not know I have thought about it and I still cannot exactly figure out what they were...

So this is where I am in my reflection of intentions as I stood upon my graveyard I could not help but remember what happens when your intentions for your actions are not pure or are not of the right mindset. I needed that reflection to be able to look back into my heart and understand my intentions for why I am considering running..? What are they is still what I am considering. So far this is where I am at, I love my school TWU, I love this community and I love the people in it. I want to make a difference for those people and I want to give back to this community that helped me so much grow and to work past my depression. That is where I am at right now and I am still evaluating my intentions and to make sure through this entire process they are pure. Now I know there are a fair amount of Trintiy students that read though so I encourage you to check your intentions for leadership coming up. Be honest with yourself about your intentions of leadership and for everything you do in life. Take the time to evaluate your intentions and I leave you with this question feel free to comment or email me or facebook message me... when have your intentions been wrong and what has happened because of it?

Goodbye for now,
Christian Sawka

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

The Purpose of "Goals" (Part 2)

Hey Guys, sorry about not posting lately I will update later on this week as to what caused me to not post these last few days so look for those updates.

Part 2
Not date for 2nd semester
Work on family relationship*
Make a difference in at least one persons life
Stay accountable/transparent
Active member in church 
As I mention in part one goals are not goals that cannot be achieved but these are goals that are a little harder to accomplish. On this second part there are 3 little unattainable goals and 2 attainable. However like I mentioned before they each derive from something larger.
I have talked about my dating experiences a little before in my competition post but for this next semester I am not going to date for my entire second semester. Now I know to some of you this seems ridiculous because it is easy not to have a girlfriend for a semester but this goes so much further then that. It is broken into these rules:

1. No Physical Intimacy (Kissing, Cuddling anything...)
2. No Official or Unofficial Dates
3. No Leading Girls on
This is where it starts to become more difficult because it is no longer just not having a girlfriend but it includes everything else. Now I bet you are already speculating as to why I am not dating but what it comes from. Well this is the thing I am tired of hurting people now that sounds kind of arrogant but it is the truth. I tend to lose focus, interest and everything in girls. It is sad and something I am working on but right now that means that I should recognize my weakness and should stay away from that. The biggest mistake we could make is knowing our weakness and fault and not trying to work with them. If you know you have trouble with something ask for help or try and improve it.
Work on family relationship. This is something I do not talk about because the one thing I want to keep to myself is my relationship with my family. 
Make a difference in one persons life, This is an interesting thing because as I talked about in a previous point what kind of a difference you can make there is. What I am aiming for is this unintentional I what to make a difference in one persons life without intentionally doing it. This deeper goals is that I what to change my life to live and show people my life by example. Often one of the biggest criticism I have gotten in my life is that I do not always lead by example and that is something I want to drastically improve in 2011 is living my life by my actions and by example. It is easy to say make a difference in one person life but now try and make a difference in one persons life by trying to make a difference in your own life. That is what I am trying to do and it is probably one of the hardest task I have been trying to accomplish for a while but this year I am going to make it a high priority and actually aim to do this.
Stay accountable and transparent,  Often in my life I have been extroverted always told people what was going on in my life but never the problems I have been facing. This goal is with this is to actually trust someone to be transparent to them. The deeps issue that comes out of this is my inability to trust people and to be vulnerable. I have this utter fear of trust people beyond telling them about my day. People often mistake me talking and me being transparent it is a scary feeling. My goal this year is to work on my trust issue and my ability to be vulnerable but the thing is how do you work on something like that? Well I broke it down what does trusting someone mean? what does being vulnerable look like? Well that is how they look trusting someone does not mean just telling them about your day it also means letting them know what you are struggling with, what you need help with. Being vulnerable means to put yourself out there with the fear of knowing people are going to see what is actually going on and accepting that. It is stepping out of your comfort zone if you sit in your little group of friends and do not step out of your comfort zone you are not exactly opening yourself to being vulnerable. Yes it does take different forms for certain people but this is what it looks like for me.

My last goal of 2011 is this... Active member in church 

And that will be part 3 :)

I am going to conclude with this... this is not my best post I have had an emotional roller coaster over these last few days and have had to look myself in the mirror and face some tough issues. However what I have learned, where I am moving on to. I will leave you with this reflect. MAKE GOALS they are great things but they need to be achievable and have a higher purpose. A great man told me a few days ago that we should take BIG STEPS one step at a time. Make an active change into who you want to become one day at time do not make these huge unachievable goals but rather take one step after the other to achieve the goal you have set. I am sorry for the short post look back tonight or tomorrow there will be a few big ones coming.

Goodbye for now,

Christian Sawka

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Depression (Phase 3)

Hey Guys,

So I had some great reflection time last night and some more reflection time earlier this morning and I started to get to this awkward point. One of my resolutions/goals for 2011 was to be more open about who I am, what I have gone through and the struggles I have faced. It was interesting because as I am slowly going through my progression in depression the more and more fearful I become of:

A. What people will think
B. If I should be sharing this
C. Am I comfortable with sharing this? 

It was a weird feeling because when I was especially at this phase in my depression in early October more and more I began to felt uncomfortable, like I was an annoyance, like no one wanted me around at all... So it was interesting today to feel that again and after about 2 minutes of remember what going through this was like I decided that it is in my best interest to post about this.  So this is when things started to go down hill (shocking I know) I would call this the crashing part at this point the plane has hit the earth. 

The first thing that started happening was my inability to find enjoyment in anything and I mean anything this meant friends, video games, TV, reading, school, family... everything and anything would not give me enjoyment. My thoughts were consumed 24/7 with trying to figure out what was wrong. I remember this one night I was at my soccer game and no matter what I was doing I could not focus on the game. After warm up all I could think about was my College Pro issues and why I was having trouble in school. Then the coach went to put me in and I could not even get stretched or get my brain around playing a game of soccer. Eventually I played the last 20 minutes and I do not think I have ever been so mentally fatigued before just trying to NOT focus on other stuff. My issue with College Pro started to take a different turn at this point because I had no idea what I was going to do so luckily my dad got involved. Before you judge there is nothing wrong with asking help when you feel like your trapped in a corner. But at the same time it was almost humiliating that I had to ask my dad for help. I know I am young, I know I have a lot of growing up to do but it was embarrassing to even ask my dad to help me from getting into some deep trouble. Embarrassment is one of those things for me that I hate to feel stupid or incompetent so when I am sitting there with no idea what to do you can imagine what that felt like.

October was also the time I starting seeing my councillor though and as a note if anyone tells you depression is a quick fix well they can go die. I believe I started seeing my councillor on October the 5th. Now the interesting thing about my first meeting was I showed up their after my previous meeting and I was dressed to the nines, tie, dress shirt, black socks, dress shoes and dress pants. I walked into the room and we started talking. There is one thing you need to know about me is that I can hide my emotions well and make anyone believe I am doing alright. I am a decent salesmen and that reflects in my personal life through this depression I started to sell the person I wanted to be instead of who I was. The reason my first visit was so interesting was because I sat there and this councillor looked at me and said well you look like you have it all together, this should just be a few sessions and then everything will be fine. Just fill out this depression test and we will go from there. I sat there for a while and wrote this test and at this point I just started to accept YES I am actually depressed and not just having a tough week. When I finished I felt this sense of relief that I am finally getting help everything is going to get better... Not true those next few weeks were about the toughest in my life.

I got this instant relief that yes I am finally going to be getting help, I am going to be improving but that was not the case. When I walked out of the doctors office life was back to 'normal' for me. I began realizing everything I was not doing, everything I was failing at, everyone I was constantly letting down and the mistakes I was always making. If anyone is going through depression that is reading this... please talk to someone before I did because in my case it was about 2 months a little to late. As those weeks when on I honestly want to say things go better, that things improved and that my life was starting to get back on track. But those next few weeks were the toughest of my life thus far I cannot remember a time before where I could not get to bed before 7am in the morning and would wake up at 5pm just to watch

I do not know exactly how to describe those weeks and I do not even know what words I would use to describe them but here it goes. I felt helpless and completely alone to the point where I wanted to isolated myself off. I sat there everyday hoping someone would text me, call me or make contact with me just so I did not have to be alone again. But I was alone and felt that was the only way things should be. I believe I deserved to be alone that because of my failure, because of my lets downs, and because I was a screw up all I deserved was to be alone. Those were the darkest weeks I have had to face. Ill leave you with this eventually things did get better or I would not be writing this right now but these is still the last phase that ill talk about next Sunday. If you are reading this and having and questions or comments please feel free to contact me.

Goodbye for now,
Christian Sawka