Tuesday, September 11, 2007


For much of 2001 I was away from college on a medical leave for complicated grief. I was staying out west, trying to put my life back together. On the morning of September 11, 2001, I received a call from a good friend on the East Coast. "Turn on the TV -- the news," was all he said. I gradually made my way out of bed and turned on the television. I could not believe the images I was seeing. I stood there, in front of the television. Frozen. Crying.

Whenever my friends and I tired of the wilderness during college, we would drive to one of three major cities: Montreal, Boston, or New York City. NYC was my favorite. In 2000, on one of these weekend getaways in the City, I purchased a photograph from an artist near Times Square. The black and white print has the Brooklyn Bridge in the foreground, the Twin Towers in the background. Today, that photo hangs in the hallway of my apartment as a reminder of all the gifts I have been given, especially life.

I share the sentiment expressed by Oprah in the "September 11, 2001" segment on Disk 4 of her 20th Anniversary DVD Collection. The following is an excerpt.
Every single day that is offered to us, is offered to us in grace, and you have to take it and seize the moment. . . . There's not a morning when I put on my shoes-- There's not a morning when I get dressed, when I brush my teeth -- There's not a morning I don't think about it. Every one of them did the same thing that I'm doing right now. Every one of them. And they never came home. So, I feel I owe them. I feel I owe them and everybody else who's come before me the best that my life can offer. That's what I got from September 11.

I will never forget.

No comments: