I’m A Man

The Beard Story Morphs

My first digital story was about My Bosnia Story. It was a project that I did during my Basic Digital Storytelling workshop.

My second digital story was supposed to be about shaving my beard and mustache after my having them for 27+ years. I wrote it and liked part of it but I was not satisfied with how it ended. Over the course of six months I would struggle with it and then put it back on the shelf again many times.

I got the chance to take the Facilitator Intensive Training offered by The Center for Digital Storytelling. This workshop gave us perspectives on how to facilitate a digital storytelling workshop in our environment.

So I brought my “Beard Story” to be mulled over by the collective of instructors and fellow facilitator trainees in a story circle.

I was asked deep probing questions about what was the story really about?

This was tough right-brain work that I’m not used to doing. Issues were being uncovered like “what makes a man?” and “do I know I’m a man?” and “how do I know I’m a man?”.

I rewrote it and then shared it again with my classmates and the lead facilitators. More layers of the story onion were probed and revealed. I rewrote it again.

Over the course of four days, the Beard Story morphed. It was hard work and my brain felt like mush but I really like this revised story.


I’m A Man from Patrick Bartkus on Vimeo.

My thanks to Daniel, Amy, Kayann, Christina, Corinne, and all the great folks in our group last week.

3 thoughts on “I’m A Man

  1. Anonymous


    Thank you for sharing your story, your pain and your hope. As one of those people who have only known the man without the beard … God's thumbprint is evident in your life.

    Blessings to you my friend,


  2. Anonymous

    Patrick, Deb and I enjoyed this and grieved with you on it. Great job. Seeing you and Trudie was great. I loved the last part…I saw my father. Very powerful and great testimony of the love of your heavenly Father through all the pain in finding the real Man. Great story, brother. Well done. I love you, brother.

  3. Brian Lohmuller

    Awesome story Patrick! Great message, compelling and moving, and very professionally put together! Thanks for sharing.



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