You guys! For a minute, I actually almost overlooked Sept 11 this year (GASP!!). I was reminded when I was laying in bed chatting with my husband yesterday morning, talking about the insanely hot weather we’re having, the late start to the school year and all the other stuff you do when you have 3 minutes of alone time with the person you’re running your world with. I’ve been away for 10 weeks in a place that is reminiscent of my childhood…summers in the Poconos at my grandparent’s place or week long visits to the Catskills with my parents and other families, going to day camp making macaroni necklaces and playing flashlight tag until way past our bedtimes. Our home in the mountains is a little Dirty Dancing meets Leave It To Beaver. Kids roam free invading coolers full of snacks and juice boxes, parents cook out and cocktail, s’mores are constructed around the fire pit, no one worries about the bad stuff. It’s secluded and gorgeous, the people are kind and generous and welcoming. We host a lot of guests and do a lot of entertaining which is right up my alley. I love a full house with kids running around, the grill being put to good use and the adults enjoying the peaceful atmosphere. I guess that’s why the 11th slipped my mind this year. We were having too much fun to keep notice of the calendar and once we got home it was back to our regularly scheduled programming…school, sports, music lessons, etc. For me it’s been about moving back into our apartment, reconnecting with friends I haven’t seen all summer and focusing on work. Keeping in mind the day and not the date.
I worried about it yesterday morning, feeling a little guilty for not thinking about today way in advance the way I usually do. After a few minutes of contemplation I came to the conclusion that this stage of mourning (for lack of a better word) is what happens naturally for a lot of us. After we lose a loved one, we hold a special place in our thoughts and hearts for them but we may not remember the exact date of their passing years later (I can tell you months and years for a lot of mine. Exact dates? Not so much). I’m chalking this up to life going on…to having happiness in your existence, to focusing on the future instead of dwelling on the past. Make no mistake, that’s not to say it doesn’t matter because it absolutely does. What I am saying is that for me, the best way to honor that God awful day, the day that I learned the true feeling of fear, the day that could have very easily gone a very different way for so many, the day that changed my life greater than any other day…I will NEVER forget that day or those feelings. But I will continue to live and celebrate and work hard and love. I will take a minute today to cry like I always do…for the precious lives that were lost, for never being able to understand why it happened, for the anger and the fear, for so many reasons.
Today is a day to remember and reflect, it’s a day to look at your life and be thankful for it, it’s a day to be reminded how very precious every single one of us is. It’s also a day to focus on moving forward, and I’m going to do just that by celebrating my dear friend’s birthday. I hope you do something good today too.
And because I do it every year, here’s the amazing article Will wrote 2 years after 9/11, from his first hand point of view.