My friend lost her daughter years ago in a drunk driving accident, at a pre-graduation party, senior year of High School. She was graduating with honors; a bright girl who made one fatal mistake. She got into a car with a drunk driver. She herself was drunk.

Every year, my friend sends out a holiday card. For a couple of years after the tragedy, she didn’t write anything about Amanda, her daughter.  I know that feeling is one thing, but finding the words is quite another. I wrote to her saying that I thought she needed to mention Amanda because it’s a family letter, and I wanted to remember her and felt saddened that she wasn’t mentioned. It was bold of me, no doubt.  But, if I felt that way, I’m sure others did, too. Perhaps, because we aren’t very close friends, I was able to say it and take the risk of hurting or losing a friend.

Now, every year, there is mention of Amanda. She writes about the scholarship in her memory. She writes about what she and her husband do to raise awareness about drunk driving to high school students and how it helps them to keep her memory alive.

Here is the note I wrote back to her this year:
It’s so nice to read about how many blessings life has given you: the travel, the fun, the new experiences. Life for everyone is bittersweet. It’s a skill to see the sweetness outweigh the bitterness. You seem to meet the challenge, and I’m so happy for your family.  I remember Amanda when I read your notes and am reminded about what her life stands for, and how I can make a difference with the young people in my life.
May many more blessings come your way.
With love,  Eva
Everyone who lost a loved one wants opportunities to remember them.  You can help!