It has been a good morning thus far. Got into the gym despite going to bed a little later than usual. Did a lot of cardio and felt very strong and energized by the end of it. Again, I am enjoying the fluidity of movement in and of itself. I have been in reflective mood all morning. Thinking about this web of life and my place in it. Wanting to connect on a new level to everyone and feeling decidedly excited about where this can take me. As I said, I did get to bed later than usual and this also why I am so reflective this morning.
A documentary was on The Passionate Eye, a Canadian documentary show, last evening. This show is called ‘102 Minutes that Changed the World.’ I have seen it before and it is exceptional in catching the confusion and fear that New Yorkers were feeling as 9/11 began to unfold in such an epic tragedy that would ultimately be felt worldwide. The majority of the videos are shot by ‘amateurs’. Just ordinary people who happened to look out their window on a spectacular September morning to find one of the towers was on fire. What speaks to me in this documentary is that they did not know what was happening….initially. While the first one was tragic, to be sure, there was more of a curiousity and general confusion as to what just took place. When the second plane hit tower number two…there was no doubt that this was an assault…an attack and the information they were getting was obscure and random because no one really knew what was taking place. The second plane, however, was an affirmation of all their fears….and ours. It was no accident.
I was getting ready for work that morning. It was 6:00 AM or thereabouts our time in Vancouver, BC. Val Cole, who was a radio personality at the time, said that reports had come in that one of the twin towers in Manhattan had been hit by a small aircraft. Funny, I thought to myself, I was pretty sure New York was a no fly zone. I finished up my makeup and they were chatting about it on the radio. I was fairly certain that CNN would have coverage of the event so I turned on the TV. I was initially surprised with how much damage and devastation had been done by what I thought was a small air craft. They were talking on the TV and there was speculation that it may have been a commercial plane. At that point no one really was too sure of what was transpiring. Then I saw the sun hit and illuminate a silver object on the left of my screen. As it advanced it became obvious that it was a plane. It was flying directly toward the twin towers. There was disbelief in the commentator’s voice. As the second plane moved ever closer I remember feeling my heart begin to sink and I was shaking my head ‘no’. And it hit with such force…just slicing through the building and this burst of a hellish ball of fire that just seemed to engulf the entire upper portion of the building.
In that moment, I knew that there would be a war. In that moment I witnessed a most godless act against humanity. In that moment, I along with millions of people worldwide, sat in horror watching people make the decision of how they would die that day as they opted for a freefall rather than being consumed by the gluttonous fire within. I had woken my daughter and told her that a war would be imminent, and I wish to God I had been wrong about that. We sat there rather feeling so very helpless watching the debacle unfold…and when the unthinkable happened…something no one had even anticipated could happen and the towers collapsed I think everyone’s heart broke a little that day.
Here in Canada we re-routed and grounded over 3,000 planes within an hour. The air space over North America shut down in a quick and efficient manner. Impressive how quickly this was done. As other reports filtered in about the Pentagon and the plane that had been destined for the White House and just the scope of what was taking place and all I could ask was ‘Why?’
And to this day, I cannot and never will be able to understand that kind of hatred. We are all connected…we all share this space…let’s make it a beautiful space…let’s nourish it from our hearts. I hurt for the young boys that are taken into these camps and fed a litany of hate throughout their young lives to mold them into these ambassadors of death. And however someone interprets God or spirituality or whatever…I would never want to serve a higher being that would encourage and demand such actions be taken to ‘honour’ their name. There is no ‘honour’ in such acts and there never will be…there is no higher power or being that exists in this context…at least not in my mind.
So we heal…we reach out and try to be kinder and gentler…to everyone. To send that out throughout this web that binds us all. To create and nurture a love that we all share and need and desire.
I was in New York this past September…a week past the 10 year mark of that date that is now a defining moment in our history. I went to the memorial created to honour those who died that day. There was an echo of the grief shared by not just New Yorkers…but all of us who witnessed this senseless act. There was this echo of the pain felt as our hearts’ broke in that moment. But there was also an echo of the love we looked for to restore and build our faith once again in each other. As I left the site I shook the hand and hugged as many police officers and firefighters that crossed my path without being too invasive…because for them…they are still healing. For many I think it is still very raw.
And as another transplanted New Yorker once said…”Imagine all the people…living life in peace…”. Still one of the most beautiful concepts yet to be realized but hopefully within reach.
So my knee is healing and my heart is healing and my faith in all that is beautiful in this world is being restored. And I will endeavour to do my part, however small it may seem to see this come to fruition.
I hope all of you have a fabulous day!