Sunday, September 11, 2011

Physical Pain is Temporary

September 11, 2011

I have been trying to figure out what to write about this morning. I woke up feeling sore and tired, but needed to get out of bed. As I sit here on my couch with my coffee I am totally hooked into the coverage of the 9-11 ten year anniversary broadcast. I am listening to the stories of these families who have lost their loved ones, the stories of the survivors, and the reading of the 2,977 names of those who died,  and poems that various political icons have been speaking and I cant help but put myself right back where I was when I heard of the first plane hitting the tower. I was fortunate to not have personally known anyone who was in the towers, or on any of the other flights.

We all remember where we were that day, we all remember what we were doing. I was in class, a senior at Fitchburg State College when we heard word of the first crash. My entire class and most of the basement level of the building all gathered in the tiny maintenance office on the floor with the two maintenance guys and stared at the TV in total disbelief. Than the second plane hit. We all cried, we all were confused, we all reached out to eachother. Returning to our rooms and homes we called loved ones to talk about and assure everyone was ok. We all joined together as they evacuated one of the buildings on campus everyone opening their doors to invite anyone we could into our townhouses and other rooms as we all sat glued to the coverage on TV.

I heard some of the statistics this morning. Of the 2,977 people 79%  were male,  24% female and 48% had children under the age of 18. There were 44 women that were pregnant when the father of their child was taken from them. They ran a video of those 44 children on Good Morning America and it was amazing to hear those 10 year olds talk of their dads, how they sleep with their belongings and how much they look like them. They are strong, their moms are strong, and they clearly have deep connections with their dads that they have never met.

I did not lose someone on September 11th, but I was standing praying for all those who had. My heart being ripped apart for those who had lost someone, or who didnt know the whereabouts of their mother, father, sister, brother, uncle... the question remained if that person was going to show up alive. My FSC community bonded together and I was called upon as the president of the largest club on campus to rally up as many members as I could to usher people into the Weston Auditorium for a memorial, cut and assemble ribbons and hand them out and hug, comfort and console all of those who were experiencing a personal loss.

Ten years have passed. We get up in the morning, we go to work, school, the gym, we board airplanes, subways, trains and get in our cars. We have continued our lives. Many more lives have been lost, soldiers fighting for our safety and the honor of our country. Many have lined up to donate blood and volunteer for memorial committees and support groups for soldiers, but we all get up, we all keep moving. Some reminded every morning when they wake up alone in a bed, some when they look int he mirror and see scars on their faces and bodies from that day, some when they go to work and those who they worked have given the ultimate sacrifice... some when they look at the skyline of where the twin towers once stood... of the day that changed our lives as individuals and a country forever.

A beautiful memorial now sits where the twin towers once stood. Architect Michael Arad and landscape architect Peter Walker did a remarkable job designing a very fitting memorial. The cascading waterfalls create beautiful shadows and sound, at times of the day a rainbow is seen... and the second cascading waterfall represents a deep void. Absolutely a work of art. I would like to someday get there to see this in person. (These are both computer renderings, and I am sure it is much more beautiful and breathtaking in person)

This morning I woke up, I walked down the stairs with every muscle in my body aching from the torture I put it though yesterday. My arms are sore, my legs are sore, my shoulders are sore.... my hands ache... the bruises on my collarbone are throbbing, but this pain, this pain is temporary. It will subside and I will go on. I watched and commiserated on a very personal level with those who suffer with the loss and pain that will never subside from losing a loved one tragically on September 11th. The day it seemed like the world stopped turning.

Mayor Giuliani spoke these words this morning at the memorial. They really hit home with me. Please keep all those who have lost their lives and all of those who are left behind, whether on 9-11, before 9-11 or after 9-11 in your hearts today and every day. Say a prayer while our country stands united in memorial.

Until we meet again someday....

From the Book of  Ecclesiastes

A Time for Everything
1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
2 a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is
3 a time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
4 a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
5 a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
6 a time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
7 a time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
8 a time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.
9 What profit hath he that worketh in that wherein he laboreth?
10 I have seen the travail, which God hath given to the sons of men to be exercised in it.
11 He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.
12 I know that there is no good in them, but for a man to rejoice, and to do good in his life.
13 And also that every man should eat and drink, and enjoy the good of all his labor, it is the gift of God.
14 I know that, whatsoever God doeth, it shall be for ever: nothing can be put to it, nor any thing taken from it: and God doeth it, that men should fear before him.
15 That which hath been is now; and that which is to be hath already been; and God requireth that which is past.



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