I wasn’t sure if I would blog about TODAY…this day, September 11th. This excellent post made me decide to go ahead and blog.
As you can read in my previous post, September 11th is also my son’s birthday, so I deal with conficting emotions on this day. I want to be able to pause and reflect and remember the tragedy that happened in the USA on September 11, 2001. I also want to be able to celebrate the blessing of life that is my son.
And while this is getting a little bit easier, as time heals some of the wounds and gives us the protective covering of a scar, those two events –a birthday and a tragedy– will always share the link of September 11th.
About a week after September 11, 2001, my husband had to load up his gear and present for a pre-scheduled event at the firing range. Since my soldier husband works in a hospital, our kids don’t often see things like kevlar helmets and rucksacks. He set his gear by the front door for his early morning departure. When one child got up after bedtime (to ask a question or use the bathroom…whatever) I was afraid it would be an issue, but he didn’t say anything about it, and I gave a sigh of relief, thinking he hadn’t seen it. I was wrong.
As I was dropping the boys off at school the next morning, that child began sobbing.
My heart broke when he revealed that he thought his daddy was going off to war without saying goodbye. How close we came to not knowing his worries! With a heavy heart, I thought about how he had carried this fear throughout the night and early morning. I hugged him and cried with him and reassured him that his daddy wasn’t going anywhere right now. We wiped our tears and I sent him to his classroom.
After I pulled myself together, I went into the building and talked to the principal and the counselor. They’d probably already thought of it –after all, they were professionals– but nearly 1/3 of the school population was related to the military, and if my own son was harboring fears, I’m pretty sure there were other kids, too. I can only hope that all teachers were told to watch for signs of distress in their classrooms.
His daddy did eventually go off to war. He said goodbye to us all first. And Thank God, he came home to us a year later.
I searched to find a video clip that showed the nation’s grief without being political, only to have You Tube show President Bush’s face as the cover photo. Today isn’t about politics. Please be respectful in what you say, and refrain from berating our Commander in Chief.