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Saturday, September 11, 2010

Sept. 11, 2010

I wasn’t planning to blog about 9-11 today. Seems too predictable. Also, the 9-11 footage I saw on tv last week disturbed me so much, and it’s hard to find words to fit it. But I read someone’s blog today and it inspired me to write. I’ll keep it brief. Long-winded isn’t always better, I’m finally discovering.

All I could do on 9-11 was get through the day. It was so shocking, and so horrifying. I had a part-time job working with young kids, and they talked about it at school. I remember feeling compelled to watch the coverage, but at the same time, feeling like it was too much to see.

One year later we’d moved back to Southern California and I participated in a remembrance at the stadium, organized by a radio show. Each of us was given a name to read into a microphone, and it was broadcast all over the city. A bell rang after each name was read. The names were in plastic-sleeved name tags. This presentation felt meaningful: with someone else’s name pinned to your shirt, there was a deeper connection to the person who had died.

I still have the name tag. It reads Paul R. Salvio, World Trade Center. He was 27 when he was killed. I felt a connection to him not only as an American, but also because I was 27 when 9-11 happened. Coincidence, yes, but whatever. We find significance where we find it.

Amid all the heartache surrounding 9-11, it was beautiful how people reached out to others, and how people all over the world mourned with America. That date changed the world. But the world isn’t broken, and neither is America.

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