By Katharine Swan On Thursday, August 17, 2006 At 12:39 PM

Exactly one year ago tonight, Michael and I talked on the phone for the first time - a first phone call that lasted all night long! After our relationship became certain, we decided that the day of that phone call - August 17th - should be our anniversary, rather than our first date (a lunch date almost a week earlier). It was, after all, that phone call that cemented our interest in, and our bond with, one another.

Even though today is technically our one-year anniversary, we will be celebrating the occasion this weekend. In fact, we have a rather exciting weekend planned! It will be the only anniversary of this type that we will be celebrating; the next one will be our one-year wedding anniversary. :o)

Today, however, is also a one-year anniversary of a different nature: it is the anniversary of the death of a good friend and employer. Meg Dorn, who employed me to perform a number of odd jobs while I was still in college, passed away a year ago today. In fact, I found out about her death just hours before Michael and I started our all-night phone call; and Meg was a major topic of conversation that night.

And so, a year after her death, I struggle with what I can say about Meg that will live up to her memory. Meg was unlike any other person I have ever known: she was a very private person and incredibly eccentric; yet to those who knew her, she was bursting with life and love. She was more generous than any other person I've ever known, despite the pain that she endured at the hands of those who should have loved her most. Even a year later, I can recall her as clearly as though she were standing right here beside me.

I miss you, Meg. I miss walking into your house and hearing different music playing at full blast in almost every room of the house; and whenever I eat sushi, I can still hear your voice asking for your "blast-off sauce." Most of all, I miss the vivaciousness with which you approached life.

Both anniversaries represent fundamental elements in who I've become and the choices I have made throughout the past year. I hope that both influences continue to guide my path for a long time to come: Michael by my side, and Meg as the memory of the most amazing woman I will ever know.

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Katharine Swan is a full-time freelance writer with more than 5 years of professional writing experience. In addition to maintaining several personal blogs, she writes a variety of online marketing materials for clients, including company blogs, articles, and press releases. In her free time, she spends time with her horse, reads, and writes fiction.

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