Tuesday, January 08, 2002

Innocence Dies: 2001 – The Day America Cried

December 24 and 31, 2001
Updated January 8, 2002

It began like any other day. But it wasn’t. It was a day that we will mark time by – before or after?

It seems absurd on the surface to write of a year, and focus primarily on just one day. I don’t think I’ve ever done that before. But this year I must. This year, all things pale in the light – or should I say darkness? – of that one day.

September 11, 2001 – oh God, how could You have let these terrorist attacks happen? But You did. And it has brought us together. We are united. We will stand. We are Americans. I have never in my life been so proud of that.

I think we all felt numb the day it happened. The mere thought of carrying on as normal, going through the motions, seemed like sacrilege. But we had to. Even as thousands died and millions (including all of us) mourned. Even as life stopped for so many, and changed for so many more.

How could they attack our country? How could they kill us so crassly? How could they do it in the name of God? But they did. And it’s over. And we have to go on. And we will, because we are Americans.

It seems sacrilege to write of any other happenings this year, but I must. This year was another turning point for me when I started on meds. I can’t believe how much Zoloft has helped me. I pray God will keep His promise to me to not worry about how I will pay. He has been faithful so far.

And of course, I can’t fail to mention the gift. How could I forget the gift? Spending three days at Charles’ house and meeting his new wife and kids was pure, unmerited grace. I didn’t ask for it, and I certainly don’t deserve it. Thank You, God. I don’t know why You keep doing these things for me.

Once I said I was glad to see the year end because it had been so hard. But I wasn’t. Not really. I lied because it seemed the right thing to say and because I wanted to leave the pain behind.

But the pain doesn’t go away. It comes into the new year with us. So I don’t want to say good-bye to 2001. It’s sacrilege, and lying, to leave some things in the past. I will always – always – remember September 11, and it should not be forgotten. I don’t want to leave it in the past as we enter this new year. Indeed, it won’t stay in the past; it is a present reality, even in 2002.

So as I say good-bye to 2001, I will not let go of that one day, even as I embrace whatever the next September 11 holds. May God bless me, this new year, and may He bless and heal my country.