Thursday, September 11, 2008
Today is one of those days I prefer to not talk too much about. Chris and I were living within walking distance of the WTC on this day in 2001 and everything about it is etched in my memory yet I prefer to keep it buried somewhere in the back where it no longer burns with the sounds and smells and feelings that dominated that long, long, never-ending day.
This morning I did my best to stay away from the whole TV drama but they got me when I was in the car, driving on the highway and the radio station where I usually go to for a laugh started to play a montage of news clips from that day. That is what really gets me; the voices of the people, the eyewitnesses, and their reactions, their horror, their fear, their confusion about what they were witnessing. Grown men in tears. The shrieks of the crowds of people on the street as they watched people jump out of windows and then finally, the giant buildings pancake to the ground in a gut-wrenching thud thud thud thud thud. (and worse, the silence that enveloped the city afterwards.) Maybe this is what gets to me the most because I was one of those eyewitnesses but as it was happening, I didn't shriek or cry. I was numb. I could not grasp the enormity of what was going on and I remember not really feeling it for hours afterwards, when I finally had a meltdown and cried for it all. It was way too much to take in at once and now, 7 years later, it is way too much to relive.
This morning I cried while driving down the highway and I rubbed my belly and wished I could promise to protect Kumar from all the bad things of the world but if this day taught us anything, it was that nobody can protect anyone from bad things happening. Some of the best people in the world had to go through the most unimaginable last minutes of their lives that day and nobody could protect them from it.
So instead, I promised Kumar that I would teach him about the bad but also teach him to be kind and generous and sweet and that if he surrounds himself with all those things, he can push the bad things to the back of his mind where they are safer, and still live a happy life. And his mama and daddy will always do their best to protect him from the bad things. And hopefully we can.