Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Emily's Legacy

As we begin the extremely difficult task of adjusting to our lives without Emily there have been many things that have helped to continue her legacy.  Emily would have been thrilled to know that so many people have donated in her memory to the Helen Sawaya Fund and the Pink Daisy Project.  Both of these charities were very important to Emily and she benefited from them during her fight with breast cancer.

Emily's friends have found some other ways to raise money in her memory.  The Measure Lounge at the Langham 5th Avenue in New York City has a "Cheers to Emily" drink on their menu this month with a dollar of each drink purchased will be donated to the Pink Daisy Project.  Last weekend my parents and I joined several of her friends to say "Cheers to Emily" and enjoy her special cocktail.  It was a very nice evening to celebrate Emily and she would have loved it.  There were some tears, lots of laughter, and many "Emily stories" being shared.  The drink is delicious and we are happy to hear that it is very popular!
Even more money has been raised for the Pink Daisy Project in Emily's memory.  A teacher friend's school raised over $400 last week during their Breast Cancer Awareness Day.  Also one of Emily's friends has a daughter who is having her third birthday party soon.  In lieu of presents, they have asked guests to instead make a donation to the Pink Daisy Project.

Shortly after Emily passed away an article was published telling her story and discussing the financial burden of being diagnosed with a chronic illness on Learnvest.com.  This article was actually picked up by several online publications including Forbes.com and Huffingtonpost.com.  It is comforting to know that many people have read her story, been inspired by her strength, and also have a better understanding of what is possibly involved when life gives such unexpected news.

I also love hearing stories how friends continue to carry Emily's memory with them.  An avid runner who participates in several races a year had a shoe charm made with the letter E and runs in honor of Emily for all of her races.  Another friend always carries a copy of The Great Gatsby (Emily's favorite book) with a couple of pictures of Emily inside as she travels through New York City.  I knew I too wanted to have a tribute in some way and I decided to have the letter E tattooed on my left wrist.  Emily knew I had the idea to do it and actually got to see it before she passed away.  I told her that would be my way to take her with me from now on and promised her I would still do things that we had planned to do.  I had the tattoo artist trace her initial off her signature from my son's first birthday card and now I love to see her handwriting permanently on my wrist.  My mother decided she liked it so much she wanted one too!  So now we have matching Es!
We know that nothing will ever replace Emily in our lives but we will continue to carry on her memory and look forward to doing more things to carry on her legacy.


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