I purchased the key for myself with the message BREATHE written on it. No one is a stranger to my anxiety, and if you follow this blog, you know how hard I work through it every day. When I bought it, I was going through my daily motions. I was unsure of everything in my life. Still in the confused state of everything I went through a year prior with my “ex-whatever the hell he was,” my post-grad job search was going no where and I was generally unhappy about all aspects of my life. I knew I had to push through; I knew that I needed to chill the hell out and breathe.
So I bought my key. I wore it every day. I told my story every time someone asked. I never imagined when I would give it away. I knew that I needed it. I showered with it on, slept with it around my neck, hell, I even wore it while I worked out. I held my key when I was upset, I freaked out when I forgot to put it back on (even though I rarely took it off.) I still remember almost losing it to a couch at my friend’s apartment, but she gave it back, and I held it safer than ever.
The past couple months, I have had it hanging in my car. Every once in a while I would grab it while I drove, but I rarely wore it anymore. In fairness, I just hated having it stick to me while I worked. So I just let it dangle in my car. A daily reminder as I drove to work, the gym or wherever else I went.
When I left for Big Barrel Festival on Thursday, I knew I was missing something. I looked back at my dashboard and quickly grabbed my key. I knew I haven’t needed it in a while, but I didn’t want to not have it in case. Something inside of me knew that I might have a moment during those four days where I would want it around my neck.
But what happened was better. What happened made me realize that sometimes you can work so hard at something and it becomes better. Life can turn out to be something that is actually positive instead of living as if positive will come. I didn’t need my key anymore. I am finally breathing without reminders. I am finally relaxed constantly. Sure, I have my moments, but these moments don’t spiral me into a panic attack. My life is what it is, and my life is becoming something beautiful.
Nicole had a stressful day, Nicole NEVER gets stressed the way I saw her. She told me she needed to breathe as she pointed at my neck. I handed her the key faster than I could listen to her ask me if I was sure. I knew it was time. So i handed over my key, and I melted away all my anxiety for the weekend. I knew that there was a reason for me feeling the need to have it, and when it happened that way I knew all signs were there.
The Giving Keys also had a tent sent up where I bought a new key (only to lose it about 24 hours later.) But hey, I’ll know when I need a new key. Or maybe I’ll end up receiving one from someone else. Who knows? But what I do know is that I am a different person than who I was when I bought my key, and I couldn’t have grown without realizing it.
So cheers to new beginnings, happy middles and the ending of stress. Life is good, life is beautiful and life couldn’t get much better.