My post yesterday reflected the strange mood I’m in. I went to a 9/11 memorial service and one of the speakers read a quote that really fit my mood this morning. I have to paraphrase it because I didn’t write it down at the time. It was from the widow of one of the pilots. I believe it was the plane that went down in Pennsylvania. She basically wanted to tell people that the one lesson she had learned from this senseless violence, the one thing that helped her to make sense of it all, was to remember that life is too short to hate. And she is right. You just get now. Today. This moment. If it was to be your last, how would you want to spend it? In anger? In worry? Or in gratitude. In showing those around you that you love them.
I was talking this afternoon with the guy who came over to do my garage door repair olathe ks and he was telling me about a client he had serviced the other day who had been in the second building when the trade centers were attacked. He was in the city for three weeks of training and was at the beginning of the training. They had taken a break and were looking out the 60-something story window at the South Tower when they heard a big explosion and saw stuff that looked like burning paper floating down past their window. An announcement came over the intercom to tell them their had been an incident in the other tower and to evacuate the building. He said that they went to the stairwells but it was very slow going. Imagine all the people from 60 stories below pouring into the stairwell at the very same time. They got down about ten flights when he heard a huge explosion and the building shook. That was the second plane slamming in to his building about thirty stories above him. Can you even imagine? Of course, people started moving with more urgency and he made it out. He had called his family after the first building to tell them he was ok and evacuating but he wasn’t able to get cell service after that. From the street they did the only thing they could think to do, which was walk back to their hotel. Along the way he found a mattress store that was letting people use their land line and he was able to get in contact with someone back home.
I think about his story all day today. You think those things only happen to other people. But they happen to someone and that someone could be you. So how will you spend your day today? Will you veg out in front of the television, surfing through channels to kill some time? Will you pick a petty argument with your partner over something that isn’t even important to you? Will you fixate on the crappy thing someone said to you at work last week? Or will you spend a little time to think about your future and set some goals. Or maybe put in a few hours toward the ones you’ve already set? Or maybe call your mom. Which I’m going to do right now. Hold on.
Ok, I’m back. And I’m glad I did that.
So, when we say “always remember”, do more than wear the tshirt or hashtag the tweet. If you really want to remember and honor those who lost their lives so tragically and senselessly on that horrific day, do something that really matters. Live your life with intention. Make the most of this day.