Remembrance

Remembrance can be a hard thing.

Did you remember where you set your car keys as you frantically search what seems like every nook and cranny of your house? Did you remember to turn off your scorching hot curling iron before whizzing off to school? Did you remember to grab your homework on your way out the door?

Although remembrance is difficult, it’s important.

Remembrance can be the difference between being on time and being late. It can be the difference between burning your home down or keeping it safe. It can be the difference between getting an A or failing an assignment.

Today is 9/11. I’m sure that thought has entered your mind as least once today. Perhaps you had a moment of silence at school or work. Perhaps you read a tribute to a fallen one online. Perhaps you briefly discussed the event in a history class.

It’s impossible to fathom the importance of today from these little moments. Many people simply moved on after that minute of silence for the victims of 9/11, too busy to worry about something that happened over a decade ago. People soon after that small moment became fixated on textbooks and extracurricular activities. They became irritated by incorrect Starbucks orders or a bad grade, when in reality, these aren’t things that should matter. We should be bothered but much bigger things.

2,753.

It’s not just a number. It’s people. Mothers, daughters, nephews, brothers, cousins, coworkers. People frantically dialing the numbers of their loved ones with shaking fingers blurting out one final goodbye before burning alive or plunging towards the streets of New York. 2,753 innocent people who woke up and dragged themselves to work, expecting to go to their son’s piano recital that night or attend yoga class or see the latest movie with their friends. It’s absolutely sickening that there are people in this world twisted enough to strip people of these little joys in life.

Al Qaeda crashed into those buildings with one goal in mind: to cause panic and distress. That goal was achieved in the moment, but they did so much more. They gave the rest of America a need to unify in remembrance to honor those 2,753. They caused unimaginable pain and suffering, but they also sparked nationwide patriotism and a want to help each other out in any way possible.

The funny thing about remembrance is that it ends up teaching you a lesson. If you lose your car keys, you’ll hang up a key rack in your laundry room by the garage. If you leave your curling iron on, you’ll be sure to pull the plug as soon as you’re done. If you forget your homework and get an F, you’ll write a reminder to carefully tuck it in your folder the night before. All these things prevent us from doing what caused us distress before.

Unfortunately, there’s so way to ensure that there won’t be any distress in our lives. That’s just a simple fact of being on this planet. There are always going to be evil people in the world. But what remembrance can do is teach us to hope for a better life and a better future.

9/11 taught us that there will always be hardships in our lives. Some are so monumental that you don’t know how you’re going to get past them. But no matter what (as cliche as it sounds), we need to live our lives to fullest. Those 2,753 people entered the front doors of the Twin Towers with no clue that they only had hours left to live. Imagine how many petty feuds would’ve been solved, how many “I love you”s would have been said, and how many goals would’ve been accomplished if only they knew.

Today, I encourage you to think about what changes you need to make in your life. Today, I encourage you to reach out to someone who may be in need and help them. Today, I encourage you to remember those 2,753 people who died 13 years ago today.

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2 thoughts on “Remembrance

  1. As we get older, remembering becomes trickier since we have so many more things to remember. However, as we age, memories of past events become warmer and more vivid, like watching a sunset on Lake Erie.

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