"This Key Opens Doors"

- Verb
- Meaning: To continue in a course of action even in the face of difficulty or with little or no prospect of success.
- Example
"He persevered with his treatment"
- Synonyms
persist · continue · carry on · go on · keep on · keep going 

On my birthday, I was given this key by a awesome awesome friend. I hope everyone has a friend like this in their life. He gave me this key.

Who am I?
Many many things. I am a actor, a father, a bartender…okay..you get it. But one thing you don't know.. I'm a long time sufferer of severe Depression.
After being told the story of the key (Who makes them, what they represent, what I do with it, etc..) I wore it with pride and let me tell you-

I loved this key.

No. You don't understand. I LOVED this key.

I even had it blessed. Not by just a priest, a Monsignor. 

I loved feeling this key against my skin when I was auditioning.
Or when I was feeling sad.
Or afraid.
Or upset.
Or whatever came to call on my soul's door. This key kept me strong.

I often wondered if I would ever give this key away. I loved it so much. I refused to clean it because it had seen a lot of wear (much like my myself) and I liked that about it. 
So, I wore it all the time. Every day. Never knowing what would become of this little part of me. I thought that maybe one day I'd give it to my daughter. Or her daughter (if she had one) Yes, every day, I would devoutly wear this. I'd often be quietly thinking to myself what fate this key would have if the day would ever come. The day where I had the courage to part with this special gift…

…that day was today. 5:09pm PST.

As I rolled into work, a good friend of mine who I hadn't seen in sometime was suddenly there as if nothing had happened. I went up to him and told him how happy I was to see him and asked where the hell he'd been this whole time?

As it turned out, Hell is exactly where he'd been.

He is a "person in recovery" as they say. 
He'd been clean for quite some time. Holding down a job. Working good hours. Wonderful relationship. He's a success story with a smile that would make you smile back. A hero carefully hidden behind a uniform vest and no-slip shoes. I don't know a brighter light and if I do, I'm not going to say it here..


He slipped.


First it was alcohol. Then, well..one thing led to another and next thing you know he started doing Heroin of all things. When he was really having an issue with that, he decided it'd be best to come down off it by doing Crystal Meth. (I'm not here to explain 'tweaker logic', folks.) Now he REALLY had a problem. Shifts missed. Calls started going unanswered. Questions about how he was doing were as well. Finally, his girlfriend drew her line in the sand and got the truth out of him. When all was confessed, she had plastic bags of his clothes and a finger pointing to the door out. He was losing everything he had worked so so hard to achieve.


He took a week to dry out, come down and detox. (Meth, Heroin and God knows what else. It was like a party, only tears and vomit and violent shaking and not like a party whatsoever.) Once he came back down to earth, he got clean. He got focused. Made calls and amends. Work had decided to give him another chance. It was his first day back when I had walked in.

I was blown away. 

"How did you do it?" I'd asked.
"I guess I just had to persevere." was his reply.

There it was.


I felt that key against my skin and knew it was time to say goodbye.

I told him the story of this key. How I acquired it and what to do. As I was giving this key away I couldn't believe I was doing this. This key was a part of me. But, I did find someone who needed it more than me. The key doesn't write it's own fate, it opens doors to them. This door was one I could not ignore. 

He accepted the key and took it around his neck. It felt like a knighting ceremony only instead of swords and maidens it was aprons and muzak. I took one last look of it's tarnished metal before it slipped away behind a uniform vest.. on another journey with someone who needed it more than me.

Will I get on in life without this key anymore? I don't know. It's funny, I feel it's absence and miss it.

But I guess that's where I need to persevere.