Bringing Out the Best in Each Other – The Giving Keys

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August 13, 2013

Bringing Out the Best in Each Other

I was at a point in my life where I needed someone to love me. I felt so lonely in this world. I bought this key at Altar'd State because I liked the way it looked and I loved the word on it, "INSPIRE." I have always needed encouragement from friends and family... I wanted to inspire someone someday but I didn't know how. 

I'd gotten the key a few months before I left for college. I had a feeling that I would meet someone this summer and be able to connect with them and then be able to give them my key. I became extremely attached to my little trinket, wearing it everywhere I went. I got a lot of comments on it and told the story of the giving keys everywhere I went. Work, the mall, vacation... every place was a place I could connect with others

I did get worse, despite the daily reminder on my necklace. As I went down the path of sin and unhappiness I wore it less and less. Soon it ended up on the window seat of my bedroom collecting dust with other things. I soon forgot about it.

I had so many unhappy and unhealthy relationships at this point in my life. I was involved with a guy that didn't love me and I didn't love him at all. I went camping very reluctantly with my family in Ohio. For the first few days I was completely miserable. I hated my family and couldn't stand being around them for a few hours let alone a few weeks. 

But while I was there I met a boy. He was two years younger than me, and though I felt no love interest with this kid, we did connect almost immediately. After that we became almost inseparable. For the rest of the vacation I was hanging out with Tom. He treated me like a lady which was something that I had been longing for, and we definitely had a lot of fun on the basketball courts and water slides. 

Tom made me want to be so much better than I was, but I didn't know how to start. It turns out that Tom also had some baggage he was carrying around. He said that I inspired him to be better when he was at his worst. Like I said, we were inseparable. 

We went home at the end of the week, better people for our meeting. We both struggled daily but we always texted each other encouragement, and I can't tell you how many 1 am phone calls went on between us from opposite ends of the country. 

One night Tom was particularly down after a rough day. I tried to make him feel better as I paced my room. I stumbled over something on the floor and looked down and saw the word "INSPIRE," engraved on a bronze key. I smiled, told him everything was going to be fine and without hesitation grabbed it and an envelope. Here it is sitting next to me, waiting to be mailed as I type this. I know he is going to love it. Although he probably won't wear the key, he'll definitely put it on his key ring. I really hope that it will help him to keep inspiring people, and let him know how much he has inspired me.

 

-Rachel

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HOURS OF WORK CREATED

Through the purchase of your Pay It Forward products, The Giving Keys has generated hours of work for people transitioning out of homelessness.