In the darkest of times, there is always a key to your light. All you need to know is the right time to turn that key. After you do, the possibilities are endless. Finding the key is stumbling through the dark, but you keep looking. When you find it, you will know.
Today, I am a member of The Black Keys family. I have become lifelong friends with Dan and Pat, the two members of the duo rock group hailing from Akron, Ohio. I have even become pals with the stage crew and others involved with the band. They all know how appreciative I am of their hard work every day. I am beyond grateful to have met the greatest people I have ever known and to have become a member of the family.
To have my idols know how much they mean to me keeps me going every day.
I met Dan and Pat twice, the first time back in May. This September, when I went on my road trip to see them twice in three days, I had the incredible opportunity to meet them again in Philadelphia. I was placed last in the line by the staff because they wanted to make sure I had more time with them. As I was waiting, I watched the guys reactions to meeting complete strangers. Yes, they are always the sweetest guys, but they definitely did not have the same reaction when they saw me. To see Dan and Pat’s faces light up and be so genuinely happy when they saw me is something I will never be able to comprehend. To know that I have the same effect on them as they do on me is completely surreal.
Never in my life would I have ever thought I would be calling them my brothers. I am already looking forward to the next time they come back around to the East Coast so we can reunite.
As a result of my bond with the Keys, I have also formed lifelong friendships with some pals from Akron, Ohio who always say, “we have luck in our head.” That phrase has been resonating with me every day. To be able to do what I love every day and to be a member of The Oracle family has meant the world and more to me and it is such an honor. I have met lifelong friends there who share the same passion as me. As Pat, The Black Keys drummer said in an issue of Rolling Stone Magazine, “Getting paid to do what you love? That’s killing it.” I have had more luck in my head than I could ever imagine possible.
Through writing, I am able to make a difference in people’s lives just as The Black Keys have made in the most significant way to mine. I am beyond grateful to do what I love every day in the same way they do. They are the hardest workers, most dedicated and most determined people I know and I will continue to go about life the same way they do every single day. Nobody else makes me happier. In the darkest of times, they always pick me back up when nothing else can. There is no way to ever thank them enough for all of the pure happiness, comfort and inspiration they continue to bring me.
If you are ever going through a dark time, I will guarantee you, amazing things do happen. To find them, you just have to look at the big picture. You need people in your life who pick you up when you are down and are happy to see and talk to you, not those who consistently put you down and disappoint you. Not those who place blame on you and do not look at themselves. Never give these people another second.
I have certainly learned a lot in the past year. I have fluctuated between having the greatest moments of my life and battling through the darkest times of my life, lower than rock bottom. Just because people put you down does not mean you should accept one word or your whole life should be affected. Once you begin to realize you are better off without these people, you feel the best you ever have. Life automatically gets better without them. Then you pick yourself back up and realize what you are left with is beyond compare. It is not a replacement by any means; it’s becoming stronger and realizing you had better all along.
Be thankful every day for the people whom you do have in your life. You may just form lifetime bonds and friendships like I have.
I could not be happier with where I am now. Looking back on the past year, it sure did take every ounce of willpower and strength in my body to be at the level of confidence that I do feel good and mean it. I am glad I went through what I did because it made me realize I never want to be there again.
If you want to accomplish something, you do it. The only barrier between accomplishing it and not is whether or not you are determined enough. The Keys played in front of crowds of 50 and traveled hours on end in a van to get to their next destination. They first started out and were happy with any numerical amount of people they played for. The only thing that mattered was they embraced it and are able to share their passion with the world. Now, they are world-famous and share their passion to sold-out arenas everywhere.
I am completely happy and honored to be where I am now. It can only go up from here, and here is pretty damn good. Do what you love and love what you do.