Tuesday, September 11, 2007

6:09am: Have a good day, soldier :)

Ground Zero 9/2004
You just made my day :)
Have a good day yourself
Sep 11, 07 (Tue)

This is the first realization that today is in fact an anniversary of something harboring so much momentum that six years later it finally touches me. The ripple moves outward from disaster and six layers later I feel the first personal pangs of what followed. Six ringlets after the rock pierced water's surface it dumbly occurs to me to look around and ask what happened. Vested interest does that, I guess, heightens your concern.

I won't attempt to point fingers toward reason or connection of events. The temperment of the world is chaos no matter why, no matter who paid for flight school or who funded training or oil fields or notoriously coined phrases regarding weaponry. These things are not my motive today, as I take one more reckoning step in the direction of acceptance and the knowledge of what lies ahead if this particular course holds steady.

Over the last month I've all but beaten my head against the wall for not knowing more about this War, for shutting myself off, allowing numbness to set in, for choosing to be blissfully ignorant. And today I recall trembling as my 3rd period graphic design class was disturbed by news reports in a teacher's lounge of planes wrecking buildings and trying to understand...a draft?...gas prices?...God?...war, on my figurative doorsteps? The rest of the day was spent swapping glances of confusion with fellow youngsters, finding refuge in a place that no longer makes sense, seeing the cyclical replay of something so foreign that it couldn't possibly be swallowed in its visionary capacity. As a kid, it moved me, it shook me, it molded me like the rest of my generation to value family and friends and time. It was the end of peace and the institution of chronic discourse.

Eventually the news coverage waned. The buzz hushed. I saw the rubble pit almost exactly a year to date - still ashes and tarps and remembrance. As time passed, we forgot, those of us untouched, we moved on in this wide world of violence and we were able to coexist with it, without thought. I became apathetic. The void was cleared and my last visit to Ground Zero yielded surprise as the subways had already been reopened, building band-aids removed, and Burger King was back in working order.

This is how we move away from a wound and toward the eruption of battle, this is also how we forgot [and by we, I only speak for myself]. And so life is ironic and it would seem fitting that a text message reply would remind me. That it would remind me to value relationships, to value the moments of connection, the moments full of heart, to log the laughter and freeze pieces of invaluable living into still shots, to make the most of the hours we have, and to never take for granted a man who walks in the shadows of aftermath - it is all so much to comprehend, but this is the world as we know it.

I sift through the news these days against better advice, and I read the blogs of women who love men living lives in The Sandbox. I bite off morsels so as not to choke while chewing, and I slowly digest the actuality. I realize that I am the most unexpected candidate for such a position, but also that I'm here and willing and I'm all heart [even when it scares me].

[and it does]

...All this rambling of nothing to say that in the sixth year, the eleventh of September means something different. I am six years older, and six years altered, and six years numb no longer.

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