Many remember Judy in the way she went about life – finding the best in people. For me, Judy helped me realize there was time to breath and enjoy life. So Judy, as we mark what would have been your 50th birthday, and a year since you passed, I’ll take a moment today to look about and just breathe.
As time goes by, we remember people who are no longer in our lives in different ways, but I hope I’ve learned how to remember the pieces of people that made them special-and pay tribute them everyday.
There are 8765 hours in a year – and each of them has ticked off once again since Risa passed away in 2010. Entering my fifth year as a single parent raising two girls and I can say we are making the best of our lives and have overcome life’s hurdles – not without challenges. But 8765 times four living and remembering, we’re hanging in.
A lot happened during the course of the year – along with each of us getting a year older we’ve gone about living our lives together and independently – and I think each of us have learned a lot. The memories we share of Risa are never far away, and we talk about them a lot.
For me, I’ve had the chance to do so much during the last year. It may not look like a well planned and thought out process – but more often than not it is. There are so many people in my life who help make things easier to deal with. Many have been there for a life time or longer – others are new.
For the girls, the year has been full of a lot of change and transition. 14.0 is in high school now, and asserting her independence. 12.0 is growing so quickly – and is quickly becoming a young lady. She’s deep into the circuit for bar/bat mitzvahs for friends now – with hers less than a year away.
In the middle of the year our long time sitter moved out. A few months later, my brother (who needed a chance to re-boot) moved in. One day we’ll get our house back – but until then, I think Risa would be happy. 8765 time four living and remembering – and we’re doing OK.
On this Yom Kippur morning (yeah, no comments about my posting on Yom Kippur OK?) it’s a chance to think about moments and people. In this week that includes September 11, there has been a lot of that going on. Remembering and letting go, two distinct concepts tied together.
On 9/11 as I was thinking about friends and colleagues taken that day in the terror attack I was flipping through my phone and realized their names and numbers were still in there. In some cases email addresses were there too. Obviously, I’m not calling or texting.
I can’t remember what phone I was carrying in 2001, but I am pretty sure I had to actively put their names and numbers into at least one if not two phones since that day. A moment to remember friends without letting them go. Their entries in my address book really are out of sight out of mind most of the year.
Then I realized on my Facebook are two friends who passed away over the years. Their profiles still there, not deleted. I’m not putting messages on their walls but they are there. Another chance to remember without letting go. Again, mostly out of sight and out mind, not in the way.
Even in my house, there are items tucked away-out of sight and out of mind, but still there and present from time-to-time. Remembering and letting go. Part of life sure, but also a part of us.
So the candles we lit last night for Risa, my father, my brother, Risa’s father and all those we have lost flicker on this Yom Kippur. We remember, let go and do not forget.