Sunday, September 13, 2009

Day 254.

Friday, September 11, 2009.

September 11th. Yeah, you're right - this post is about 9/11. Choose to not read if you wish, but it is what it is.

I can remember exactly what I was doing the morning of September 11th, 2001. My college roommate Emily and I went on a run together on the prairie path in Goshen, IN. It was a beautiful sunny fall morning and we were trying to get on the right track with exercise our Senior year of college. It was fun. Low key. So normal.

And then I got to school and was checking my email and I had received an email from my host parents from my recent Study Service Term in Costa Rica. They were desperately asking if I was OK. Did you survive the attack? You see, they don't really get where Goshen, IN is...and how close it is to NYC.

I am grateful for tough memories.

One might think it would be nice to only have a capacity for happy memories. To forget all the bad stuff that happens to you, your family, or in the world. But that's not how it works, and so bad memories are intermingled with the good.

I can think off-hand of many bad memories: finding out I didn't get a promised choir award in high school, my grandfather's death, seeing my grandmother's mind taken completely by alzheimers, the scary hours after Noah's uncertain birth. These are really tough moments for me. Yet, there are really two ways I can look at them. As tragic and horrible, or as learning moments and opportunities for hope. I can't help but choose the later. These are defining moments in my life. Would I change them if I could? Of course I'd bring back my grandpa Joe for a few more years of interaction with that amazing man. Of course I'd rather have Noah live his life without the hardship of bladder exstrophy. But, am I still grateful? You betcha.

I'm grateful for caring enough about choir and music that the award meant something to me. I'm grateful I had a grandfather so incredible in the first place. I'm grateful that my grandmother was so clever and so funny, that her mind was a very sad thing to lose. I'm grateful that my little boy was born at all, and that we had the modern medicine at our disposal to keep him alive - I'm grateful that we had health insurance.

So tough memories such as 9/11 don't have to be all bad. They can inspire, give us hope, and help us to remember that life's not all peachy. And then the little good things are even better.

1 comment:

  1. great post, Hil. I, too, remember that run and then hearing the news report on the way home from class. It's hard to believe that was 8 years ago! A good reminder to be grateful for the blessings in our lives!