A Moment In Time: Remembering Hinal Patel

To quote one of my all-time favorite musicals, RENT, "525,600 minutes - how do you measure, measure a year?" It is absolutely mind blowing that it has been a year since we lost Hinal. 12 months of laughs, 52 weeks of friendship, 365 days of moments, 525,600 minutes of love.

It is still all very surreal to me and I think this is how life is for most of us now. Over the last year we have all experienced highs and lows, good and bad, failures and triumphs, and countless moments that we have shared and countless moments we have kept to ourselves. One thing that is absolutely evident is that we have all missed sharing this crazy ride we call life with Hinal. Even as I sit here and write this I can think of 1,000 different things that I wish I could have shared with her or wish she was a part of this past year. 

As life goes on, we often let little things drift out of our minds. We often take things for granted and that is when we start to miss the little moments in each day. Little moments like just seeing Hinal smile, seeing how passionate she was about the work she did, how a room would light up when she walked in, or her beautiful personality. 

Not a single day has gone by where I havent thought of Hinal. Through every single moment, memory, experience and adventure I knew that Hinal was still with us. Her spirit lives on in every single person who was fortunate enough to cross paths with her. The world and our lives are definitely dimmer with her gone; however, the passion she had for life should fuel us all to grow and be the absolute best we can be. 

For every moment we experience I know that she is here watching over us and sharing in our triumphs, standing by us in our failures, and laughing with us (or at us sometimes) every step of the way. 

To answer the question of how do you measure a year, its not where you have been, not what has happened, not holidays, birthdays, parties or even in time. The answer is simple: LOVE. Do not let one single moment go by without acknowledging its importance. Do not let one single person who means anything to you go without telling them how you feel because anything can happen. The only time guaranteed is right now so make it count.

To Hinal: I am still in complete disbelief. I look at your pictures and get emotional and then I think of the good times and how I never could resist your beautiful smile. I love you, I miss you, please continue to watch over me as I know you have done for the past year.

Love you forever and always,

Sean

 Photo collage showing some memories of Hinal. Notice her beautiful smile in every one of her pictures.

 The vehicle stickers that were designed and printed for members of the North Stelton Volunteer Fire Company, where Hinal was a dedicated member, and family.

The vehicle stickers that were designed and printed for members of the North Stelton Volunteer Fire Company, where Hinal was a dedicated member, and family.

 A Thin White Line ribbon that I have pinned to my backpack, my lunch box, my work ID, and hanging in my car to always keep Hinal with me and to always keep her spirit and memory alive.

A Thin White Line ribbon that I have pinned to my backpack, my lunch box, my work ID, and hanging in my car to always keep Hinal with me and to always keep her spirit and memory alive.