Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Reliving our modern "Day of Infamy"

This past weekend realized something that is probably difficult for many Americans… the reliving and remembering of the events of September 11th, 2001. I was working out at the gym the day before and I realized I was not 'over it'. A roll of those who had lost their lives on that awful morning came up on CNN, thousands of faces; Moms, Dads, Sons, Daughters, Uncles, Aunts, Wives, Husbands, Friends. White, Black, Asian, Hispanic along with representatives from more than 80 countries.

I began to tear up. I mean I began to get really emotional.

While a romantic at heart, I am NOT easily moved to tears and even when I came home that terrible evening and watched and re-watched in horror the tragic events unfold endlessly on cable news channels – as did every American – the gravity was lost on me. I was in too much shock. How could this have happened? And why? I'm not sure we have those answers even today, but I do know I have a deep, incredible sadness in my heart that may not ever go away.

To that I say "Good". Those poor people died for no good reason and those events have torn a lasting hole in the very fabric of our cultural memory. And they should NEVER be forgotten.

So you could imagine how breathless I became when one of my sons told me he wasn't really sure what 9/11 was. I was floored. How could he not know? Granted he was all of 16 months old on that day, but had schools and the general media eluded him for 10 years? Regardless, we got right down to it and hit the internet.

Previewing the news reports of the plane impacts, the towers collapsing, the Pentagon attack and the thwarted hijacking and crash-landing of Flight 93 in a small Pennsylvania township, made me remember it all over again. The footage of these events have been branded into my memory but reliving it this way made them no less moving.

I will never understand these events fully, but I do know one of the best ways to honor the fallen is to remember them. We can all at least do that.

And now, so will my son.

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