a timely reminder...

      Ten years ago, when I was going through my divorce, I had a business trip to New York City; nine months after 9/11. I didn't want to go; my sadness enveloped me like a staight jacket. I was functioning, but barely. Socially I could manage, but behind closed doors I was a puddle of tears and snot. The stress of it all took it's toll on my body physically. I had lost 25 lbs, my hair was falling out, and my nervous system seemed to have a short in it somewhere. How can life be so painful?
      Late one night in the confines of my hotel room, I stared out the window on the streets wondering how on earth I got here...in this exact spot, at this precise moment, holding back a sheer drape as I watched the dark shadows of people from my 3rd floor window, whose faces I couldn't see, rushing about even at such a late hour and surprisingly still honking their horns at one another... "New Yorkers don't sleep. No wonder they are rude and in your face."
      A knock on my door shattered the heaviness. It was my friend and co~worker. A welcome distraction. In that late hour, we went for a walk through the city..."It's so bright here, even at night..."
We reached our destination...I stood on a sidewalk in New York City with my face pressed against the chain-link fence which was guarding what was left at Ground Zero. It was an ominous sight. For the first time, I was acutley aware of the fact that I couldn't hear any city noises anymore...nothing. The hair on my arms stood up. I stared at the debris and the massive hole left in place where thousands of families crushed hopes and dreams loomed like souls in a graveyard. There were no words to be spoken. Everything was still and somber. Suddenly my pain seemed so infantile, it was almost embarrassing to me.
      With the anniversary of 9/11 comes a timely reminder...Both pain and love have a tremendous capacity.
      Through both of them, much is to be learned and embraced. Like the Twin Towers, even the strong fall and it may take years to rebuild, heal, and stand tall once again...stronger, prouder and better than ever before.