I was on my 1st holiday post-cancer treatment in November, 2014, and my husband and I found a store in Tofino, BC, Canada, which sold The Giving Keys. I was instantly drawn to them and spent a long time trying to choose what meant the most to me.
I was not confirmed cancer free by this point, so the word HOPE seemed appropriate. I wore my "HOPE" while receiving my "survivor" badge of honor- ( cancer-free) and found countless opportunities to share it while I was immersed in the world of other cancer patients on a regular basis.
3 more friends were diagnosed and I still was unsure who needed it most. Yet I never gave it away.
Then it happened. One of those dear friends was not doing well and ended up in Intensive Care- fighting harder than the rest of us had to. When I was dropping off a card I made for her husband, I wondered what gift would be appropriate for this stressful uncertain time.
It dawned on me that with our prayers and love, he needed "HOPE"!!!
So I scribbled a little note about the The Giving Keys story and tucked the chain in his pocket and one day to please pay it forward.
8 months later, she is alive and well and cancer-free too!! Just as we all HOPED and prayed she would be! He told me he put the chain on, wore it close to his heart, during her long, hard-fought battle.
2 years later I went to buy another chain for a friend, looking for the word STRENGTH or COURAGE. They had neither of those, so I chose "HOPE" once again. A week later I ran into a friend I hadn't seen in 8 years, when she was struggling with cancer. We laughed and cried. I noticed she had the COURAGE key.
I told her what I did with my first one and she said her daughter gave it to her and she hadn't felt compelled to give it away yet. I reassured it that it would come to her when the time was right. She smiled, quickly took it off and put it on me!
So I have the "COURAGE" I needed to pass on to my friend, and HOPE for someone waiting in the wings.