Posted by: beamsofjoy | September 11, 2010

Who Do You Love? Thoughts On September 11

Today is September 11.  I remember this date nine years ago.  It was a day like any other, until I got an instant message from my sister-in-law telling me a plane had just hit the World Trade Center.  As a licensed pilot, my first question was “Small plane?”  Her answer came back quickly – No.  My next question was “Accident?”  Again the response was – No.  Like the rest of the nation, I instantly became glued to news reports of what was taking place in our nation, and watched in horror and anger as the towers plummeted to the ground, taking so many lives with them.  The news only got more grim as video of smoke rising from the Pentagon hit the airwaves, and the news that there was another flight had crashed in a field.

My daughter was 10 at the time, and was in school about 15 miles away.  All I could think of was that I wanted to be with her.  As I watched on television as people calledout  the names of their loved ones who were missing, I realized how precious every moment spent with those we love truly is.  When I was finally able to get to my daughter, I held her and wouldn’t let go.  She didn’t understand at the time, but she will someday.

I’m blessed to have both of my parents still living.  I spend one evening each week with them.  Yes, there are other things I could do with that time.  But I want to show them I love them while I still can.  I’m so thankful that God allowed me to learn to appreciate them while I can still show them that appreciation.  Some people only learn to appreciate their parents after they’re gone.

My husband is a gift from God, and I’m thankful for him every day.  Yes, he’s human; yes, he makes mistakes; and yes, he has some habits that drive me crazy.  But I don’t imagine that living with ME is a picnic every day, either.  He is a good Christian man and leads our household according to Godly principles.

My sister lives just 25 minutes away, yet I don’t get to see her very often.  Between family obligations and different job schedules, it isn’t easy to get together.  She isn’t an openly emotional person, and declarations of love would make her uncomfortable.  But we have a phrase that we both know means “I love you” and I try to make sure I say it any time I talk to her.

I spent the day with my best friend yesterday.  We talked, shopped, and talked some more.  We don’t get to do that nearly often enough.  We also went to Drake Rehabilitation Center to visit another friend.  The friend we visited was thrown from a horse a few weeks ago, landing head-first on the road, and suffered major brain damage.  The paramedics said they lost her three times before they were able to get her stable enough to put her on the medical helicopter.  She spent a week in neurosurgical ICU hovering between life and death.  She recognized me yesterday, and I was able to hug her and tell her I love her.

So today, on September 11, as so many people in this nation mourn anew the loss of their loved ones nine years ago, I think of all the people I love.  There are so many.  Do they know I love them?  Will I have another opportunity to tell them?

Let’s decide today that we will take every opportunity to tell –and show– the people we love how much we care about them.  Give them a call, write them a letter, or drop by for a visit.  Tomorrow might be too late.

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