Tracy Lee Karner
The Way I Was

September 11: what we never forget

I’m terrible at remembering anniversaries; I often float through my days on a cloud of my own imaginings, unaware of the exact date. Sometimes I don’t even know the month. I consider this one of the benefits of being an “Indie girl.” My time is mostly my own.

5 Days ago, I was challenged on Facebook to participate in the Gratitude Challenge. In case you haven’t seen it–a friend challenges you to, for 5 days in a row, name 3 things you’re grateful for. So I’ve been getting up every morning, and first thing, writing a little ode to Gratitude.

Here’s what I wrote this morning:

I’m grateful for the many extraordinary instances when I’ve experienced amazing grace in my life, as when 5 loaves become able to feed 5,000 hungry people, for example, when:

1) I turn on the shower faucet and abundant clean water–cold, warm, or hot, whatever temperature I desire–gushes out to cleanse me, body and soul;

2) Autumn comes again and the apples ripen, the fields turn golden, there is plenty to harvest and eat, and enough to preserve to get us through the upcoming dormant times;

3) People (you, others, I) become able to overcome our hurt and anger enough to find a glimmer of understanding for the one who hurt us, which enables us to forgive, and sometimes, after time lessens our anguish, even, amazingly to reconcile differences and rebuild unity;

Here’s to Grace — when despair turns to hope; when fear turns to trust; when lies are exposed and demolished by truth; when love conquers hate; when our profoundly beautiful hope for peace and justice is rewarded with the answer, “Yes, it shall be so.”

What are you likely to remember, even when you forget what day it is? 

Tracy Lee Karner
Close-up Wall of Hope: Peace, Hope, American Flag
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15 thoughts on “September 11: what we never forget”

  1. It’s amazing, isn’t it, the ease of life that we take for granted in our privileged worlds?

    For me, it’s the enjoyment of chatting with my daughters at the end of the day, swapping stories of what we’ve been up to.

    1. I still love to read the “Little House” books, stories of an ordinary family, spending ordinary days and time together, in a time when family was sufficient entertainment. (of course, that assumes the family is moderately sane!)

  2. (Previous inability to make comment seems to be corrected now).

    This is a wonderful piece on hope and positivity and remembering the good even when we are feeling despair. Thanks.

    1. That helps me gain a greater awareness of what I was feeling, E.

      As you know, I don’t believe in “pretending” to be happy and positive, acting as if everything is honky-dory, when it’s not, because that feels untruthful. But, I try not to forget the hope, and the remembrance of good, during the tough times (but I don’t always succeed; I need reminders, and people who remind me).

  3. On this day, we remember a friend’s brother who died in the plane that crashed, and his wife and two young children who waited at home for him. But we also remember two nurses who took all their vacation and sick leave days and flew to NY to help, and who allowed a group of us to support them in their efforts.
    Loss, sacrifice and courage–those are our remembrances.
    We also have four friends whose birthdays are on Sept. 11, three adults and one child who was born on Sept. 11, 2002, reminding us of life that continues and celebrates and hopes and prays.

    1. Wow, Marylin, you were quite close to it all. I have to say that I personally was not personally effected, nor did I, at the time, know anyone who died, or anyone whose friends/family were on the scene.

      Now we live near a park with a small memorial paying tribute to 3 local citizens who worked in the towers, and we’ve since met their families, which brings it all closer to home.

  4. I’ve been enjoying reading your Gratitude Challenge on FB Tracy. It is a wonderful thing to be grateful for all those things we have in our lives, every single day. It was my birthday this week (September 10th) and I always remember that night on 2001 when out to dinner with my kids and their father for a meal to celebrate quietly. Nothing extraordinary for that Monday. Then waking up the next morning to horrific news that changed the world forever. My brother was flying a plane from the UK to Newark (he was a pilot with Virgin Airlines) and had to divert. I couldn’t get hold of my family in the UK for 3 days and it was agony because I felt so far from home that day and worried for my brother. Not to mention grieved along with millions of others over the horrendous loss of so many dear souls… This week, having been showered with love, care and kindness I’m reminded more then ever of the beauty of priceless love of and for family and friends. And the never-ending grace and mercy of God. Bless you Tracey ❤

  5. What a wonderful challenge Tracy. It’s amazing how much we really take for granted when you sit down and think about it. One thing I know I always take for granted is the stability that comes from having grown up in a loving family with wonderful parents. It’s easy to forget that this is something that so many people don’t have.

    1. So true, Heather, we do tend to overlook the ordinary good gifts of our lives, the things we feel are our birthright (such as living in a democracy, being free to travel, having 2 parents who love each other….).

      I don’t know who started the gratitude challenge, but I think we should always challenge the people we love to be kinder, more grateful, more compassionate, more truthful and, generally, wiser.

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