Two Suggestions For Anyone Else Dreading This Week
We started hearing what was coming a few weeks ago...a special report, an in-depth analysis, a retrospective. Now it seems today was the start of the 24/7 September 11th media binge here in New York. Photos never seen, stories never told, a look back.
Like most adults, I remember everything about that day...and much of what the days after brought. And even though I neither lost a loved one, or knew a responder, like everyone else I grieved over the numbing and incomprehensible losses.
I strive to be a thoughtful and considerate person. I understand people perceive and process things in their own time, in their own way, and I'm interested in-not threatened by-differences between myself and others. And I'm sure-in fact, I sincerely hope the annual events marking the day bring some comfort and reassurance into the lives of those left behind.
Laying in bed at 2am, found I was getting angry about, and stressing over is the idiot media onslaught that has started. Earlier this week the local cable station even ran a feature about a weather system that was hovering on the east coast that weekend before, 10 years ago, but blew off in another direction...their upshot was that 'gee-whiz, the weather could have changed history'. Really.
For anyone else wanting to honor the memory on your own terms, and keep your emotional equilibrium this week, I have two suggestions.
In the 1970's Catholics saw a shift in recommended Lenten behavior: deprivation had been the norm; instead, we were encouraged to do something positive for Lent. Whatever your faith or background, reaching out, and helping someone else, in memory of another is a time-honored tradition that makes everyone feel better.
In the days after the attacks, those in New York may remember a series the New York TImes ran. Not obituaries, they were approximately 200 word profiles of those lost, about a dozen or so a day. Each profile told us something special about that person, something their loved ones wanted the rest of the world to know.
They were called Portraits of Grief, and by December 31st of that year, over 1800 had been published. Some families could not be located, others were not ready, but in the years since, more have been published. The original profiles will always remain viewable online, and they were also put into a book, by the same name.
Read a few, say a prayer, and wish them peace.