No, this isn't going to be a long 9-11 tribute piece. More like a reminder to enjoy life and not take it for granted.
Yesterday, Sept. 10th was the date my Dad died...21 years ago. It somehow doesn't seem possible it's been that long. I still find myself occasionally thinking, "I need to ask Dad...," only to realize that would be a r-e-a-l-l-y long distance call. Yesterday, I had the oddest thought.
"I'm glad Dad didn't live to see 9-11."
Not the Sept. 11th of 1995, but THAT day. Because as horrified and baffled as I was, he would've been more so. His parents were of the "Greatest Generation". He'd served his country for four years. That someone would come into the U.S. with such destruction would've been unfathomable.
Oh he understood evil and what it entailed. I'll never forget sitting in a hospital room with him as he got yet another chemo treatment as we watched the Oklahoma City bombings unfold on the t.v. in the room. He sat there, shaking his head and mumbling, "Those poor people! Those poor people!" With the equivalent of poison running into his veins, Dad mused how one deranged soul could do so much damage. I could only nod, amazed at the compassion of someone so ill. Little did I know I'd lose Dad in five months.
I was glad Dad didn't live to see what happened to the Twin Towers. I'm glad he got to remember the New York of his youthful visit as a sailor. I can still hear him telling the story of going up the Statue of Liberty and standing on the torch to look over the city. (Yes, at one time they allowed you to do that). For a man from a small town, that must've seen miraculous.
So today I will quietly think of those who gave their all trying to save others fifteen years ago. And I'll be grateful that Dad lived in a world where trouble didn't so violently strike us where we live. No, he lived in a world where you told your daughter stories about wonderful places and people who lived on the other side of the world. And I believed him.
In spite of terrorists, I still do.