Friday, August 8, 2008


Today I was driving, and I popped an old CD into my player. The first song is the one you are hearing now. It is the song that I associate most deeply with 9-11, one that was played again and again that day and the weeks following. Everytime I hear it, I am taken back to that day as if it is happening all over again.

I remember clearly that morning. I had a small day care in my home, caring for 4 one year olds and my niece. I was sitting down with my cup of coffee and one of the babies when I turned on the tv and saw the first tower had just been hit.

I called my father and the first thing he said was "That's Bin Laden."

I didn't have a clue who Bin Laden was, but my father was sure.

Like all of you probably did, I watched for the rest of the day in horror at what transpired.

It was such a tragic day for this country, and it shook me to my core. I put myself in the place of those people who had died, and I realized something that changed my life.

Had I been in one of those towers, I would have died miserable, with an unfufilled life.

I was in a marraige that was horrifically abusive.

I had very little connection to God, and I was removed from my family by distance and estrangement.

I was depressed and rarely left the house.

I remember passing by the bathroom mirror that afternoon, glancing at myself, and not recognizing the person I had become. My face was bloated with too much food and too many tears. I was bruised from hairline to the small of my back. My shoulders were bowed from slouching to not be seen. I was a shadow of the person I had ever been.

I was sick to death of my life, and determined to change it.

My life turned on a dime that day. It took me a few months to gather the money and the courage, but on January 15th, I packed a U-Haul truck and left Texas with nothing but a few pieces of furniture, my clothes, and my dog. (sounds like a bad country song, but it's the truth)

I moved into a house next to my father's and spent almost a year and a half repairing my soul.

In that time, I learned that lonliness is difficult, but at times, greatly healing.

I decided to never fall in love again.

I learned that love comes when you are least expecting it.

I learned who I was with no distractions.

I will never be glad that 9-11 happened. I will never see the day as anything but a human tragedy. But I will always be grateful for the sliver of insight I was given in those moments. If I hadn't listened to the still small voice at that time, it's doubtful I would be here today.