It has been exactly one year since DJ died and not a day goes by that I don’t think of her. This has been one of the hardest years of my life but in the midst of all this sorrow, I want to do my best to remember Djamila as light and color and laughter. Every day, I see something that reminds me of how beautiful she was both inside and out. When I speak to people who knew her, they all remark on how good she made them feel about themselves and how much they loved her for that. I think, even though it’s been difficult to live without her physical presence, more and more, I’ve come to realize that she’s not entirely gone. She lives in each person she touched. There are people I’ll probably never meet who will always remember her and I can ask for nothing more than that.
I am grateful to Djamila’s mom, Ursula, who checks in on me regularly and her brother Erik and his wife, Shanthi. We will always be connected by our collective love for her.
Many of you have helped me to grieve over the past year, and I am grateful for you all, but there are a select few of you who have helped me sustain my psyche by sharing, asking, distracting, and above all, listening. I would especially like to thank a few people by name. Mary and Jackie, you both checked on me daily for several months after DJ passed and I appreciate that. Phyllis, you unobtrusively find a way to check on me every few weeks and I am thankful to you and Vinnie. My brother Cesar and my friends Leslie, Darlene, and Katie, this year would have been a very different one if you hadn’t lent me your ongoing support. Michelle and TJ, I don’t know how I would have survived without either of you.
It has been an awful year and I wish with all my heart that I could go back in time and change things but since that can’t happen, the best I can hope for is that I am able to continue to move forward, one day at a time, with Djamila’s laughter and love in my heart. I can think of no better way to honor her than that.
I enjoy reading and have blogged in the past about travel and books. My latest blog is a vanity blog. I write about whatever comes to mind, specifically, things I think I need in life. Hope you enjoy!