To Strength!

It took my breath away to receive a "Strength" key for my birthday on December 2 from the incredible Cari and her family. It's hard for me to think of any gift I have ever received that has been more meaningful, given the mission of Giving Keys and how the goodness gets passed on. I am honored that Cari chose "Strength" for me. Cari is well aware of an army of details that come down to the fact that it's been more of a fight than I thought it would be to keep having birthdays, even in my 30's. Thank you, Cari, for making me reflect on and appreciate more the strength I have been given to face my journey. You will always be an important component of that strength!

When I reflect on how to pass on Cari's "strength," there are a million different directions I could go with this. Strength is all around me!

I have decided to pass on strength to my friend Sam, who will be surprised with the inspiration Cari started when we have dinner tonight. Sam has her college graduation behind her, has been a source of strength to her family during their own challenges, and has stayed so strong in her career goals. It appears that career focus is finally paying off. Her dream job is coming together! Tonight, Sam and I are celebrating her strength, and I will surprise her with a meaningful expression of that from the Giving Keys.

Sam is bright, passionate, driven and eternally positive. In that truly challenging career time right after graduation, that takes strength. I am so proud of her for finding and demonstrating that strength! 

Sharing "strength" with Sam also celebrates one of the most rewarding parts of my own career and volunteer experiences, working with students. Sam and I had a chance to deeply connect over a volunteer project that started in 2011. That connection is something that has given me strength. 

Tonight I pass on "strength," with deepest appreciation how it was first given to me by Cari (literally and figuratively) and Sam (figuratively).

Sam, as you embark on this major new step in your life, may this key serve as a reminder of all of us who love you and believe in you so much! 

Wow, I am really looking forward to telling Sam to check this website when I surprise her with the key at supper tonight. 

To strength!

- Dawn

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