By Sandy Fox
When a person talks about an important year in his/her life, or a news show on TV asks what you were doing on a particular date, I always think of my daughter, Marcy.
The year 1966, when she was born, is the most important. What was happening in the world then? Vietnam War. President Johnson. The Beatles. Twenty-five cent hamburgers.
I associate every year between 1966 and 1994 with Marcy and what she was about then. If the year is before 1966, it is “before Marcy was born.” If I’m told to think of the year 1984, I think: Marcy was graduating from high school. And 1988, yes, that too I remember: Marcy graduated from college and was anxious to start her life in the advertising world. If the year is 1997, yes, that was an important year because I retired from teaching; more importantly, Marcy was already dead three years by then.
Time has a way of passing very quickly, and we lose track of it. I remember when it was the tenth anniversary of Marcy’s death. I wondered how that could be. As far as I was concerned, it had all happened just yesterday…no, today. Today, I felt her body hugging mine as we said goodbye at the airport because, ironically, she had to go to a funeral in California. I felt her strong arms surround me, and I thought, “I made this beautiful, intelligent, vivacious woman.” What a wonderful life she was going to have! I could never guess it would be the last time I would ever touch her and that a week later she would be dead.
In a few weeks, it will be 15 years since she died, and I think of all the wonderful things she could have done with her life and her new husband: children, a career, traveling. She wished and hoped for so much, but it was not to be.
They say time heals. I say time makes the grief a little softer. It will never, never go away. Time allows you to eventually move forward with your life when you begin to understand you are a survivor of the worst possible thing that can ever happen to you.