Sunday, September 11, 2011

its been a long night

Everyone feels differently about this day.

Every single one of us remembers exactly where we were, what we were doing, and the things that went through our mind on this day, ten years ago. We probably remember it more often than on this anniversary day, once a year.

I know I do.

And for a few seconds, the chill runs up my arms, my heart stops for half a second, and I am overwhelmed with the need to hear my parent's voices. I may not have been in NYC that day, but I am an American, and I know what it feels like to be attacked - just like every single one of you other 286 million people do.

We all lost that day.

I have thought several times this week about the victims and their families - and I keep going back to what it must have been like for the first responders. I think more than feeling overwhelmed by the weight of grief for all that was lost - stolen - on that day, I feel overwhelmed by the bravery exhibited [and continually so] by the men and women who have chosen to go into the wreckage.

Earlier this week, I was listening to a morning radio program and they were very candidly talking 9/11. The host, a very big supporter of local Police and Fire Departments, said: "At the risk of sounding very... crass: the victim's were already there. They were already there. The first responders CHOSE to go into those masses." That has been ringing in my ears all day.
I don't think that I could ever be capable of that kind of bravery.

Obviously, I don't ever intend to make light of someone elses loss. I do think that this day - and every other in the year - is more difficult for those who lost a loved one in those attacks, than it is for me. I have pain and grief in my own way,  but it is not pain in grief in the void of someone elses life. But I am still an American, and that means that I am a part of the "family" that was attacked on that awful, awful day. I took it personally.

That is not unfair, it's not rude or insensitive - it's just how I feel about September 11. And most likely, you feel differently about this day than I do.

I realize that some of my feelings on this day could upset or annoy or even offend some people. I am not out to do any of that, but I'm still allowed to feel what I do. I don't want to let it affect my actions towards any one person, and I want to be careful about how I say these things - afterall, you all have feelings and emotions about this day too. I have just been bothered today - as so many people are reflecting - that it seems like American's have divided themselves into two categories: the ones who were actually affected by September 11, and then those of us who watched you be affected by it.

That's just not true. I may not have been in that city. I may not have directly lost someone that I love because of those awful choices. And while I am sure there are plenty of Americans who have sat back, feeling safe and fortuante and comfortably untouched by those tragedies - I am not one of them.

That is how I feel.
You probably disagree.
And that's OK.

Who Says, John Mayer

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