Who were you on September 11?
Next week will mark the second anniversary of the September 11th terrorist act. Since then a lot of people have said that things have changed, that WE have changed. However, when pressed for details, no one can clearly point out how or what really changed.
As a memorial this year, I would like to get a number of people to answer the question as to how they changed. This is where you come in.
Who were you before and who are you now? How did the September 11th experience changed your life, if it did in any way? How are things different in your life now? What have you done/not done as a result of September 11th?
Once you've blogged it (on September 11th),
send me a link to your entry and I'll get a list of everyone who sent me a link up here.
Feel free to pass this on to anyone you think might be interested and together, we might be able to create a joint memorial.
Good thing I have this weblog, where I have documented every aspect of my life for the past two years.
Personally - in the deepest parts of my psyche - I changed fundamentally.
Things have changed. I no longer take future years for granted. I no longer expect the future to be rightfully mine. It's the wars and the violence and the sudden explosions of terror that have loosened my grip on my 5 year planner.
It changed who I am, what I think, how I feel. It changed my the entire core of my beliefs.
Please understand that I was never happy being labeled a liberal because I honestly don't think I was a liberal in the true sense of the word. But the attacks on this country and the ensuing emotions I went through led me down a path that I was headed down anyhow. 9/11 just pushed me there faster.
As I wrote on 10/29/02: I was never a full-fledged liberal. I never wanted to free Mumia, I always thought Michael Moore and Noam Chomsky were boorish fools, I detest the utlra liberal way of protesting things. For christ's sake, people. I drive an SUV. What kind of liberal would do that?
September 11 changed me forever. I'm sure it's changed every one of us, if in some small way. Some of us had larger, broader changes in our world view. I am one of them.
I've been engaging in a lot of self-therapy since last year. Part of that therapy is coming to grips with who and what I am, and not bending to suit the needs of other people. Part of that therapy has been taking medication so I can sift through the self-made anxiety and nervousness that made defining myself so hard. I can see into myself with a much clearer view now that I have removed the filters that stopped me before.I have taken a lot of flack for my stand on certain issues. Let it be known that I am not here to put out your point of view. If you want to be disappointed in my change of course, that's your right. But I am coming clean today and facing up to the direction in which my political compass has swung since last year. I am sliding towards the right.
Who was I on 9/11? Honestly, I don't know. And who am I now? How have I changed?
It's all right here in black and white. I'm not who I used to be and that's ok with me. I like where and who I am right now. I'm more passionate, I'm fiercer in some ways, but gentler in others. I'm more intropsective. And there's something I have inside of my that I didn't have before that day. It's like a black mark on my soul, or a weight on my heart. It's always there but I don't always remember it until I see something that reminds me, and then I suck in my breath and my stomach clenches and that lump rises again in my throat. It's a good thing to have, funny as that sounds. It's like someone pinching you when you are dreaming. A cold, bleak reminder of how the world can be.
That black mark is part of me now and I'm glad for its constant reminder that I should love while possible and do while I can and all those other Hallmark sentiments. Corny, yes, but they are good to carry around.
I wish it didn't take something like 3,000 dead people to get me here. But reality will do that to you sometimes. Wakes you up with a kick in the head.