I was in a photo studio in Melville, New York, helping a photographer shoot gift baskets for an up coming magazine spread. The morning of 9/11/2001 went from a simple shocking blip in history to a moment that left an imprint of shock on the nation. From a warehouse studio, we watched helplessly as the Twin Towers failed to recover. It was like watching prince charming fall during duel with the evil dragon. We all watched in hair-raising alarm as our brains refused to accept what had happened. No… This can’t be happening…
As the closest thing to death in my life, it felt like the world was unraveling and chaos reigned. Fear swept over New York like a thundering black mist. Post traumatic shock lingered on the faces of residents as we went about our lives for weeks until we finally asked ourselves if it was suitable to start living again. Would it be okay to smile again? Laugh?
September 11, 2001 may be the most monumental event in our history, yet sadly, the outline of this scenario happens to us constantly on a much, much smaller, individual scale. Shocking events, post trauma, lingering shock, sadness, grief, acceptance and hopefully healing. This week alone – even before 9/11 status posts – I read countless grief-stricken goodbyes to friends, loved ones and even pets on Facebook. Afterwhich I couldn’t help but wonder, How do we move on from this?
We just do. We take the pieces and the memories, pick ourselves up and just start living again. Eventually we allow a laugh, a smile.
In life we need to allow ourselves to grieve. No matter what the situation. But we need to also get to a point where we can say, “I have a life to live. I’m going to honor the memories and keep moving on.”
The moon will rise
The sun will set
But I won’t forget
Tell a loved-one how you feel today. Cherish what you have. And learn to live again.