Tuesday, September 10, 2013

I remember

I was scrolling through Facebook today and saw this




In shock, I glanced at the calendar and realized that tomorrow is 9-11.  How easily I forget, on a day to day basis the tragedy that was that day.  But how easily I can recall it as well.

I was a police officer and working night shift, so I normally wouldn’t have been up for hours.  But, a recent accident, necessitated my early rising to take my truck to the body shop for repairs.  I was so groggy on the drive I didn’t bother to turn the radio on and I quickly arrived at the body shop.  I filled out my paperwork and slowly became cognizant of the panicky voices coming from the radio.  My ride arrived and I climbed into the passenger seat of the rental car.  I asked the car company associate if he knew what was going on.  He said no.  As I drove home I switched on the radio and listened to the news.

A plane had hit a building in Manhattan and everyone one assumed it was a horrible accident.  I drove home feeling fear and anxiety rise into my throat.  I switched on the T.V., when I got home, for visual confirmation and watched in shock as another plane flew into the second tower. 

There was no doubt that this was no accident.

I sat in my room, alone, watching the footage.  My heart sunk as I watched each tower fall.  I cried as I realized all the people inside.  Quietly wondering if I would have had the courage to charge into the building.  And I rejoiced as children were rescued from a day care.  All day I sat in quiet vigil, unable to do anything else.

I felt so alone.  I was so used to doing things alone, it never dawned on me to reach out to others.  I might have called my mom.  But beyond that, I sat motionless most of the day.

Even those born after that day have been changed by that tragedy.  It changed our awareness of people outside our country.  We realized not everyone like us and we started wars, in countries we could never possibly understand.  Even today it flavors how our president is reacting to the Syrian conflict.  But has it changed who we are?  Has it changed who I am?

I for one, go about most days with my head in the sand.  I don’t want to think about the atrocities being committed across the world and down the street.  I want to pay my bills, enjoy life and coast through the week.  But that picture today stopped me in my tracks, I have forgotten what it means to love my neighbor. 

In my desire to love myself before others, I have placed myself in the role of a victim.  At one time I was, but I no longer am and I haven't been for a long time.  This attitude means I lash out at others for my pain (my mom and dad to name two).  So what does it look like to live as a survivor instead of a victim?

I embrace the woman God has created me to be.  This means walking confidently in the talents God has gifted me with.  To do this, I am starting a new website.  This site will not have my writing but give me a place to showcase my photography as well.  I am excited and for the first time not fearful. 

I am confident in the talents God has given me and I enjoy sharing them with the world.  (That is definitely new!)  I look forward to telling the world how my struggles have strengthened me and how God helped me discover who He is and Whose I am.

I will be launching this site hopefully October 1st.  But until then, tell me your stories about 9/11.  Where were you?

1 comment:

  1. Angela,

    On 9-11 I was at school teaching a class. The art teacher who had the t.v. on saw what happened and knocked on door to tell me. After that class I went and watched the t.v. for a moment then had another class. Not long, she came and told me about the 2nd tower falling. Now, it was obvious that this was no accident. Soon, we/teachers begin to get calls from the office that parents were there to pick up their child. The parents wanted to have their children with them at home. A symbol of protection and safety. It was a terribly sad and scary day. One, that of course will never be forgotten. It did awaken us all to the possibility that anything can happen at anytime. We appreciated life and loved ones morre than ever. Sometimes it's good to remember, so that we never take life,friends, and family for granted. Thanks for reminding us, Angela.