Each day I make a point of checking my Plaxo address book to find who among my friends has a birthday coming up. When I find someone who has a birthday, I prepare an ecard for her or him as a small way of staying in touch with the many people I have connected with over the years. Today, one of those reminders came up for a long-time friend of mine who died unexpectedly earlier this year. She and I had worked together over 30 years ago and had stayed in touch via mail and phone and email and, more recently, Facebook.

How appropriate that this startling reminder of my friend’s unexpected and untimely death should happen on a day filled with remembering the shocking events of 11 years ago today.

Take a few minutes today to not only remember the pain of the past, but to embrace those who are important to you either in the real world if you live close enough, or virtually. We don’t know how many days we are given. Let’s make the most of the ones we have.

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