Friday, September 11, 2009


Tonight I'm remembering another whose life ended too soon...not as a baby, but too soon nonetheless. Tonight I'm remembering Maile Rachel Hale, lost in the World Trade Center on 9/11/01, at the age of 26. She was a sweet, inquisitive, lovely woman and a good friend. We met during a semester-long maritime studies program in college. She loved the ocean, Hawaii (where she grew up), her family and friends, and chocolate. Although she majored in chemistry, she won an award for a history paper she wrote during our semester, and I admired that. In 2001, she was living in Boston, but just happened to be attending a conference at the World Trade Center that September day.

I've learned a lot about Maile since she died, remembering her with others and hearing their stories of her. She wasn't my closest friend from that semester - we were all close, in the way of people who share an experience that can't be explained without having been lived - but our friendship was certainly still evolving when she died. And that's what breaks my heart the most - the lost future. That's what we mourn when lives end too soon. Her future, and our future together, as friends, continuing to learn about each other and watch each other's lives unfold. I wrote something to that effect in the guest book at her memorial service, and it's even more obvious to me now after losing Sierra. The 9/11 anniversary has been particularly hard this year.

I miss you, Maile. I wish you were still here; I know you would have done great things on this earth. I wish you could see me now, still working with the ugly fish you liked to tease me about. I wish you could know that the boyfriend you approved of is now my husband and see our children. Maybe you do know. Maybe right now you are holding Sierra, both of you whole and happy and hoping that I am remembering you with smiles as well as tears. I hope that you are, and I do cherish the happy memories.

Maile's memorial service ended with Dar Williams' song "Better Things." Here's a bit of it:

Here's wishing you the bluest sky
And hoping something better comes tomorrow
Hoping all the verses rhyme,
And the very best of choruses to
Follow all the doubt and sadness
I know that better things are on their way.

Here's hoping that the days ahead
Won't be as bitter as the ones behind you
Be an optimist instead,
And somehow happiness will find you.
Forget what happened yesterday,
I know that better things are on their way.

No comments:

Post a Comment