It has been eight years today since my dad died. 

So far, I've honored his memory by:

  1. sneezing at an outrageous volume while suffering the seasonal allergies I inherited from him
  2. completing graduate school
  3. cultivating patience (he was always telling me to slow down)
  4. being oddly anxious about getting places on time
  5. becoming a professor for a few years (he loved teaching more than anything else)
  6. visiting delis in New York
  7. humming to myself as I do chores around the house
  8. eating as many cookies as I want, whenever I want
  9. becoming closer with my brothers and nieces
  10. never ever touching a cigarette
  11.  being there for others who have experienced loss. 

After the first couple of years, I began to understand what people meant when they said "may his memory be for a blessing." His memory blesses me daily as I go about my life. When I do things that remind me of him, and when I make choices that are better than the ones he made, I'm honoring his memory. His death is no longer a raw wound in my heart; it has become one of my favorite scars.

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