Since her death, I've graduated high school and college; bought my first car, and my second car, and my third car; dropped out of grad school; had my first date; moved 15 times; gotten married; had a baby; mourned two miscarriages; lived 6,076 days.
Because she died while I was still in high school, I never really got to know her very much as a person, a friend. I often wish I could talk to her now about parenting, life choices, how to get tomato stains out of white shirts. I wish she could have come over after my daughter was born so I could show her off. She would have made a great grandma. She never met any of her grandkids here on earth; she died a month before the oldest was born.
My senior year of high school, I had a part in the school play, Thornton Wilder's Our Town. In the final act, Emily (the main character) has died and is allowed to choose a day in her life to relive. After a brief revisiting of her family at the breakfast table, she asks to be returned to her grave. Life moves too fast, she complains, and people don't take the time to realize what they're missing until it's too late.
I'll leave you with the chorus from one of my favorite songs by Chris Rice, "Life Means so Much" (on his album Smell the Color 9). Click here for a sample of the music.
Teach us to count the days
Teach us to make the days count
Lead us in better ways
Somehow our souls forgot
Life means so much