I was excited about the upcoming wedding of my Nephew. It was in New York City. My son was 13. We were excited to go and be with our big family once again. Any time we could be with all of them was a very special occasion indeed, and we had been looking forward to it for months. It was the morning of September 11th, 2001. My son was in school, and I was getting ready to leave for work. His Dad called me on the phone and told me to turn on the television to NBC and to call him after I saw the buildings. I had no idea what he was talking about. I thought perhaps it was a movie he had something to do with. Until I watched the screen in the early hours of that morning in my living room. Everything inside of me felt like I had just died, as I stood frozen in time. We all remember where we were when we heard, when we saw. Maybe you were one of the sacred ones who was actually there. Bless your heart.
Everyone but us went to the wedding. I couldn’t bring myself to get on a plane. I was full of fear. It was only days after this horrendous disaster. I looked many places for beautiful red white and blue material to wrap my wedding gift in to send to them instead of sending myself. I don’t even remember what I bought them but I remember every detail of the fabric that I was obsessed with finding, to wrap their gift in. It was soft and kind and gentle and beautiful. I was so elated when I spotted it,that I pulled it up close to my face and buried the burage of tears in it that came cascading down. I wanted to feel like that again. Soft,kind,gentle and beautiful. I wanted the whole world to feel like that again. It would be a long time. We all became somber,stoic Americans. But we all pulled together.
American Flags were everywhere. They were on Door steps, Flagpoles,Schools,Streets,Windows, Cars,Airports. People were crying. Out loud. To no one. People were holding there heads down low. People were sad. Very sad and shocked and so very grief stricken. My brother in law started singing America The Beautiful in a Restaurant and handed out American Flags and everyone joined in with their tears and their patriotic song. It was a full of feeling time all over the world. I gave out little red white and blue flags in my Music class for the Children and the Mothers that historical morning: The Eleventh Day of September. We marched around to “This Land is Your Land”. I remember how grateful the Moms were to have an American Flag in their hands. When I told them they could keep the Flags, you would have thought they won the lottery. The children looked more beautiful then ever to me that morning. The American Flag became a very fast disappearing,treasured, high commodity in those days following.
NPR…National Public Radio, is the home of one of my favorite avenues of adventure. All week they have been telling so many stories. Stories of the hope and the love that these heroes left behind in their families…The Dads, the Moms, the FireFighters, the Police. The children who were just being born, are now ten years old. They are telling there stories. Lady bugs are spotted close by…and these children know…their Dad is about to tell them something wonder filled from up in heaven because a ladybug just landed on their water glass. People lived who should have been crushed by the buildings. They were on the fourth floor. Fire Fighters,Police, and Corporate Bosses helped people get out, and they didn’t make it out themselves. Everytime I hear a new story, I stand and I cry because I feel the strength and the bravery of the person telling their sorrow to the world. It has to be a sacred,unique, agonizing passage in life, for those who were there…for those who have lost their beloveds….for those who are still here. For those who are no longer with us. I can’t begin to imagine the depths to which love reaches inside their souls. The lonliness. The never answered questions. The guilt. The rage. The forgiveness that maybe comes….in time. My Mama always told me ..”Time heals all wounds”. Does it? Will it? Will this ever be “healed”?
I know for me. This Sunday will be a very reverent, sacred day. A day for me to reflect and remember and carry on my life with a red white and blue heart. There will be love and hope for a better time. There will be gratefulness to see how our world will respectfully celebrate the passage of ten years. I know I will see children carrying the little flags…toddling down the avenue in the way that only they can pull off and I will cry. I will cry for I will be putting all my hope into their hearts and soul. I hope so much that they will find the resolve to melt away the hatred that is still so very prevalent in our world today. I will hope. For that is what I do.