• Debby Kruszewski

When to Change the Locks

Updated: Apr 29, 2021

When to Change to Locks

When my ex-fiancé Eric left my house for the last-time-I never saw him again. I did not think to ask for his set of keys to my house.


I did not think that it was the end of us or prepared for it. I didn’t have my laundry list of items that I wanted from his house. The good-byes I wanted to give.

The sweater in the backseat of his car.

The last look into his eyes to feel why he was leaving.

None of that was able to get done and keys were somewhere at the bottom of that list.


Lets backup to the good times….

We started to plan our future. It did not start as a sit-down conversation, it was how the conversation changed.

When WE get married”,

When WE get a house,”

When WE have kids,”

When WE….”

The comfortability set in and the fears of being alone forever went away. I got comfortable in this new “WE” conversation.

One-night Eric went out with some friends to a club in the city. He told me he would not be coming over; he was going to stay with one of his friends. I did not think anything of it. I wanted him to go and have fun. I came home from a night with my friends, grabbed his favorite sweatshirt to wear, and dozed away.

At about 3am I heard the door jiggling and the locks started to open. I panicked and slowly got out of bed looking for my phone to call 911. The door opened and I realized it was Eric. I went to walk into the hallway as white as a ghost. I was panicked. I was shaking. He came running to me to care for me as I was passing out. I could not speak. He just held me and kept kissing me until I calmed down.

He was all smiles, happy to come to my rescue. “I love that you are wearing my sweatshirt right now. It means a lot to me.” He said and I could not let those words sink in as my heart was pounding so loud.

“Why are you here? I thought you were in the city. You weren’t coming here?” I said once I could talk again. I was genuinely upset.

“I was out in the city and it was boring and stupid. I do not want to go to clubs and dumb bars anymore. I wanted to be with you. I walked out and came straight here. I was not thinking I would scare you. I just wanted to hold you and fall asleep next to you. I want to be here with you and not out without you.” I was able to relax and be back into the comfortable “WE” conversation. I fell back asleep in peace.

I know right? Serious Lifetime movie stuff….

When he left for the last time, I was in the mindset of hoping that encounter was going to happen again. Because I did not think after that moment, those conversations, he could pick up and leave. He was the one that wanted to come back and stay.

So, I did not change the locks (sorry mom)

I stared at that door for months and no return. I slept on the couch in my den to be closer to hear the locks open. Be closer to jump into his arms when that day came again.

It never happened.....

After years of no return, my broken heart still in pieces, I changed the locks and tried to move on. I placed all the memories and hurt into a box in my mind. I meditated on being in a hot air balloon over the ocean and let go of all I held onto of Eric. The pain was still there. I just tried hard to pretend it wasn’t. I didn’t ask God to help me. I just sat in the pain even when I thought I was over it.

After writing “Live to Tell” I made of list of people and memories that I had to forgive and let go of. In the summer of 2019, I wanted to continue to list. I needed to forgive Eric honestly in my heart. It was a hard process to go through. As the summer came to a close I felt that I could think of Eric and smile that it happened instead of hold the anger in my heart. I wished him joy and happiness in his life.

I gave it to God.

The healing process became easier to accept. I never got the answers of why he left. It didn't matter. I had to let him go.

Eric made the choice to leave this world on November 19th, 2019.

When I received the message of Eric's passing that morning, my heart broke all over again. The years since I last saw him disappeared. I fell back in the “WE” conversation we had all those years ago. I felt his presence in my apartment as if he never left. I remembered the warmth of his hugs. But he wasn't here and hasn't been in years. I remembered that I missed those moments. He was visiting me from another realm of the next phase of his soul's journey.

I made the decision to go to his funeral. It was confusing and painful to be at his coffin mourning his loss that I held onto since the day he left. But I did it because I FORGAVE him months before. I had to honor that Forgiveness.

One day this past spring, I was looking at his obituary photo. Eric is wearing his beloved Yankee hat on backwards. It was my favorite hat of his. I smiled and needed a joke. I said to the photo:

“Eric out of all the crap you left here you couldn’t have left that hat?”

The next day in front of my house was the exact hat sitting on the bench. It scared me to see it. I looked around and no one was in sight. I picked it up and held onto it. It was for sure a message from him. I turned around and took it into my house. I sat and stared at it. I convinced myself I was crazy. I know I wasn't crazy. But the thoughts came through my mind.

What if I was wrong?

What if he didn't leave it for me and I read it wrong?

What if I took someone’s prized possession?

I didn't know what the message was he was sending me. I felt guilty about having the hat. So after a few hours I put it back on the bench.

“Eric is this hat from you? Do you want me to have it? I will only accept it if you accept that I forgave you. This will be our peace offering. I will give it 48 hours. If it is still here then I accept this gift knowing you had accepted my forgiveness.”

The many passings throughout those next hours the hat stood there untouched and proud during the bold winter weather.

When the 48 hours were up I woke up that morning after a visit from him in my sleep. He was dressed up in a suit. He was smiling and handed me a gift box asking me to open it. It was the hat. I woke up in astonishment and gratitude. I walked outside to the hat sitting their bold in the cold stormy spring weather with a whisper of "I accept your forgiveness". It was a sign that we are now at peace.

Moving on….

The other day I went to lock my door and my key was broken. It made no sense. I mean bend and useless. There is no way I could bend it back. I have no idea how it happened. It sat on a key hook where I put them the night before right after I used it. It was still functioning that night. In the am it was a non-functioning broken key.


I was in disbelief and knew it was no coincidence at all. There was a message there. I turned to God and prayed for guidance.

“No one is going to come into your life and hurt you again. I am protecting you.” -Jesus

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. All who rage against you will surely be ashamed and disgraced; those who oppose you will be as nothing and perish. Though you search for your enemies, you will not find them. Those who wage war against you will be as nothing at all.” Isaiah 41:10-12

What I did not see years ago was that key was in charge of my heart. I allowed someone else to hold it. When I was hurt, confused, upset I did not ask God to help me or take away my pain.

I just lived in it the pain alone.

Maybe I wanted to hurt because it was a feeling of something. I didn’t turn to God when I needed him the most.

This time I turned to God immediately. God gave me this message to show me that NO ONE oversees my heart but me.

No key is in charge of my heart nor can open it.

No one is going to break my heart again.

That broken key is the answer I needed to see God’s love and protection from the harm I experienced years ago. That chapter is now closed. The locks have been changed. There is no longer a need for them. The gate of light is unlocked and open to shine freely into my life. I welcome in the light and share it with all of you.

Thank you, Jesus!

If you have someone that you loved once upon a time remember the good times and let go of the bad memories. Life is too short to live in anger and pain. The past is the past. Be grateful that they happened and forgive someone for the pain they once caused you. You never know what kind of pain they are experiencing inside to place that pain on you. Everything is a growing experience. Don’t forget to always keep Jesus in the center of your heart and let him guide the way.

I would love to hear from you! Please leave a comment below and follow me on social media. You can sign-up for my newsletter and updates on my contact page. Thanks again for reading my post!

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