Today marks the eighth anniversary of the loss of Lily, who died before she could be born. Had she been born, her life would have been brief and miserable. This week, I visited the lily bed where the tiny wooden box that once held her ashes (scattered over the San Francisco Bay) is buried.
Despite the terminology some use, there's no such thing as being partially born. But the hopes one has for someone who never really was can take on the shape of missed memories.
I always thought Lily would like ballet, and black patent mary janes, and cupcakes. So every year, when I light a candle and say Kaddish, I think of this: