Thursday, May 5, 2011

where were you when ...

I have vivid memory of where I was when I heard about the 9-11 attacks on our country.
I will always remember that day, and parts of the days that followed.
The media, the sounds, the words, the stories, the tears, the patriotism.   The war.

I was talking to my neighbor the other day.
She has four kids and we were talking about the newborn phase, baby blues, breastfeeding, and adjustment.
She said that 9-11 happened right after her first son was born, which had dramatic effect on her emotions.  Can you imagine!?

I am fascinated by how these national events shape our seasons.  Where I was physically during an event is only the tip of an iceberg.  Where I was in life is the far deeper subject.

When the Columbine massacre occurred in April of 1999, my brother was in the hospital.  We watched it all unfold for hours as we sat around his hospital room.  Blake was sick, but others were dead.  Blake was hurting, and so was the entire country.  Interesting memories.

Adam and I stayed up late on Sunday night because we rented March of the Penguins on AppleTV.  Great movie, by the way.

When it was over, we shut down the house and went to bed.
Completely clueless.

Luke woke up at 4 in the morning to nurse.
I was exceptionally exhausted from staying up late, watching the penguins.

In an effort to stay awake, I played Words with Friends on my phone.
When that got boring, I tapped on Facebook to read the news feed.

There were several status updates about USA, Obama, Osama ...
My stomach turned and I knew.  Something had happened.

So I went to FOX news (how did people function before iPhones?) and read the real story.
Osama bin Laden had been killed by U.S. Navy Seals in a top secret military operation.

I was overwhelmed.   There I was, in the quiet of the morning, sitting in my big leather nursing chair, holding my newborn, shocked by the news I was reading.  And all of a sudden, exhaustion was no longer just physical.  It was emotional, spiritual, real. 

I was flooded by memories of my brother in camo, coming home from Iraq.
We had watched the news faithfully for his sixteen month deployment, and all I could think about was him, the dust, the guns, the boots, the explosions.  He was a soldier in the war against terror.
Pride and sadness.  Both, together. 

And I was flooded by worry for my son, who nursed peacefully in my lap.
He was so innocent, so unprepared for this world.  I spend every minute these days nurturing, nursing, rocking, loving, playing, reading.  But someday, this little man will be a soldier in his own right.  On his own.  Fighting for place in this world. 

I woke Adam up to tell him the news.
He thought I was dreaming and talking nonsense.  It took a few minutes to convince him I was lucid.

He, too, thought of my brother right away.  Interesting.

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