For nine years now, this has been a sad time of year for me, because it's when I say Kaddish for Lily, the daughter who died before she could be born.
I had ideas about who she would be, and what we would do together, and in some way I envisioned her as a mini-me, with all of my and her father's virtues and none of our flaws, the Labradoodle of children, which I suppose is what all first-time parents imagine before birth. Most of those parents, however, have the opportunity of seeing those dreams destroyed as their child matures and takes to slamming doors. I never did, so for me she will always represent an otherwise unattainable perfection.
There is a saying in Hebrew,"May her memory be for a blessing." But because I have no actual memories of Lily, my memory of her will always be of the hopes I had for her, and hope, even when foolish, is always a blessing.
And, of course, it's spring, when the world is reborn, and hope blooms, copiously. So tonight, when I light her yahrzeit candle, I will think once again about how I can live my own life to be worthy of what she meant to me.