Personal Significance Timothy O'Brien

When people remember the past, they don’t only talk about happiness. It is often the ordeals that seem most significant. People shoot for happiness but feel formed through suffering.

David Brooks

"What Suffering Does"

Happiness: a sunset beach dinner with friends.




the state of being happy.

We often find hope from struggle, and growth from ashes. We must take notice to times when we find ourselves in this state of happy. Lean in. Listen to where you are growing.

I find happiness in the simplicity of life being good to me and leaning into how I can position myself better to receive more of that.

The happiness that only comes from a good warm meal.




the accomplishment of an aim or purpose.

Feeling the soil beneath your feel and the ability to journey into knowing oneself can be one of the best achievements possible. This has been a struggle with me, questioning and re questioning my identity over and over again. But my success has been sitting with myself long enough to know the person God created me to be.

Creative. Artistic.

Composer. Painter. Author.

Christian. Gay. Human.

The first time I felt truly successful was my wedding day.




the state of undergoing pain, distress, or hardship.

Suffering is a state I am familiar with. I have fought myself, battled against churches, and warred against God.

Reconciling my sexuality and my faith has not been an easy feat but it has been the greatest adventure I could have ever taken. And it's a journey I am still navigating!

I, truly, know how much suffering can pay off. And it will.

Trust me,

I have a marytry complex.

This violin solo explores my relationship with my husband and how much my faith has grown since meeting him, even though I have experienced great abandonment for the decision.

A violin solo I composed for my husband, performed on our wedding day.

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