When 9-11 forced itself into a permanent place in our collective minds eight years ago, my family and I had no idea that this very date in '09 would have as significant a place as it does. Here it is 9-11-09.
In a sense, it is a placeholder for me...a memory marker.
Just as families felt the horrible loss of their loved ones 8 years ago, my own heart hurts for the loss of my oldest son...6 months ago today.
What I am learning in my intensely fresh grief...and in observing the mature grief of others who loved and lost dear ones in NYC those many years ago...is that death dates should play only one role in our lives.
Rose Kennedy said it well, regarding the dates of her sons' deaths. She chose to remember the dates of each one's birth and celebrated their lives, accordingly.
So, today I choose to remember my son, Nate Mansfield, as the vibrant man of passion who fully lived his life beginning when he was a boy of mischief and in fun.
He crammed more life into his 27 years than most of us will ever have lived in our own long lifetimes. I invite you to join me in celebrating his life on this date.