Monday, September 11, 2006

a lump in my throat, a knot in my stomach, and a tear in my eye

I was just driving along minding my own business this morning. Just another monday morning... I dropped the kids off at school, stopped at the post office to mail some bills, ran into the store to pick up a couple things, hopped on the freeway, turned on the radio, and headed for work. I drove on down the road listening to music and driving, half awake and thinking about little else, same as any other day. Then I saw him. Right in the middle of the last overpass before my exit, there was a man holding a large US flag, blowing in the wind. I felt like some one kicked me in the stomach. Today is September 11th! How could I not even have realized? The date hits me like a freight train. This man was giving his time, when I imagine he was supposed to be at work. He was standing there in front of the world, cars whizzing by behind and below him, making a silent statement. A HUGE silent statement. I wanted to turn around and drive back by to tell him thankyou! How could I forget about something like this? September 11th was the day that so many people's nightmares became reality. September 11th was the day so many brave people gave their lives for others. September 11th was the day I realized how vulnerable every single one of us is, and the day I lost the sense of security I'd lived with all my life. It was the day that war and atrocity became real to me. War had always been something we fought somewhere else, away from home, before that day. You know, the whole "It could never happen to me..." scenario. September 11th was the day that brought my country back together, that relit the fire of patriotism in so many people's hearts. Ironically, I was driving down the freeway listening to music when I heard the news that morning also. I didn't go back to talk to the man with the flag, but I am thankful for what he is doing there today. I hope he stirs in others the thoughts he did in me.

Thanks to you, whoever you are, for touching my life, and for reminding me this morning of many things that should never be forgotten!

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