Remembering 9/11

Of course, I couldn’t let the ten year anniversary of September 11, 2001 go by unnoticed on my blog. My heart has been processing the events again today, especially as I’ve been looking through the videos, galleries, stories, and memorials online the past few days/weeks. It takes an emotional toll. It is hard to imagine that was ten years ago that I was in high school, heading outside with my ecology class, desperate to call and make sure my dad was OK in Washington, DC. (he was, just stuck in town for awhile). There are thousands of stories much more emotional than mine, but still…

I think: What if it had been me, during a normal sleepy morning at the office, who suddenly went up in a fireball?
What if it had been me, terrified, panting down 80 flights of stairs?
What if it had been me, trapped and unable to escape?
What if it had been me surviving, living with the horror of what I saw every moment?
What if it had been me, at home, waiting for dad to come home? For mom to come home? For brother, sister, fiance, husband, to come home?
What if it had been me, knowing my husband/boyfriend/father/brother had rushed into the flames, to save others, and ended up dead?

And I get a little bit paralyzed, you know? It’s too hard to carry all of those burdens. Like I have to always hold everyone so close that nothing could ever happen to them. I think, for a moment, I’ll never get on a plane again. I’ll never go in a high building again. I’ll never go to a big city again. I think, who gets to decide it was time for those nearly 3,000 people to die? 

But I remember a quote from the (boring, not that great, sort-of-interesting) movie I watched last night, Princess Kaiulani: Make room for the living. And I take a deep breath, and I turn off the horrifying audio and video from 9/11, and I will text my parents, and my boyfriend, and everyone I love and tell them how much I love them and thank God for them. And I will pray for the families of the victims, and I will remember that God is in control.

So, well, I guess I’ll keep on getting on airplanes and going in tall buildings and maybe one day I’ll visit New York City….and I’ll try to make room for the living, as best I can.

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