Sunday, September 11, 2011

September 11, 2011

This is a profoundly sad day for all of us, particularly those who mourn the direct losses of 9/11.  I did not know any amongst those who perished in the twin towers on 9/11 but they changed my life, collectively and individually.

In the dark days that followed, I read every word of the "Portraits of Grief" series in the New York Times. It was the first thing I read in the paper, every day, for all the days it ran.

And of course I wept. How could you not.

But as I read, I came to see a common thread among all those who died. They were vibrant, full of life.  People up and about, at work at the dreadful hour of 9am. People who wanted to live here, and work here. People who loved NYC with a passion. I knew not a single one, but I felt a connection because I too love NYC with a passion.

Today we will gather to celebrate their lives, to mark their too-soon-absence, to renew our vows to use this time they did not get to live wisely and well.  Yes, we shall weep. How could we not.

But when we turn away from the place of remembrance and mourning, let us dance!

Let us crank up the volume of the most energized music we can find, kick up our heels and dance! With wild abandon let us embrace life, let us embrace what comes next.

We have been given the most precious gift of all: more time. 

We will never forget those who lost their lives on 9/11.

Let us never forget to celebrate their lives with life.

Let us dance!


Joanna said...

As a non-American, I wholeheartedly embrace this philosophy of 'Let us grieve, remember and the transform that into a dance of life'.

Mason Canyon said...

A beautiful tribute.

Thoughts in Progress
Freelance Editing By Mason

Darlene Underdahl said...

That was very nice.

Sitting here with a big lump in my throat.

Go New Yorkers!

BP said...


Anne-Marie said...

Lovely words, Janet. Thinking of all of you today.

Scott Bryan said...

Thank you for this post.

Becky Mahoney said...

Beautifully said, Janet.

Sharen Ford said...

10 years ago, my husband and I lived in Tribeca, 6 blocks north of the World Trade Center. Every morning, I would leave the house at 8:30 am for my walk along the Hudson, passing the Towers as I made my way towards the bottom of the island.

Except for the morning of September 11, when I remained in bed far longer than usual, contemplating a vivid dream in which my long-dead father had come to sit and talk with me.

When the first plane struck the South Tower at 8:46 am, instead of being right beneath it, I was still at home, belatedly tying my walking shoes.

During the hours of horror and fear that followed, I was far from certain that I would be alive at the end of the day. Ten years later, I am grateful to be able to extend my hand and say, "Let's dance, Janet!"

Lee Wind, M.Ed. said...

Thank you for this. Beautifully said.
Namaste, Lee

Michael G-G said...

Wonderfuly written.


Loree Huebner said...


Melissa said...

A girl in one of my classes said she felt guilt for still being alive and having a family to go home to.

I chose instead to be immensely grateful that I could call each one of my family members that day. I chose to celebrate life while remembering loss.

Debbie Barr said...

Thank you. Tragedy and death should always remind us to better appreciate celebration and life.

Sarah Allen said...

Amen, amen, amen.

Sarah Allen
(my creative writing blog)

Colin Smith said...

I remember where I was that day when I heard, and I remember going to and seeing the pictures and reading the news for myself. And while it was an event that affected us all, I won't even pretend that I can imagine what it was like, and what it continues to be like, for you NYers. You for whom NY is home, to have your home so violently assaulted. To be reminded every day you go to work of the lives lost ten years ago. You who possibly rubbed shoulders with those that became helpless victims of a mindless but ruthless act of terrorism.

We remember those that died, and the families that continue to deal with their loss. But let's not forget the city that lives on, damaged but not broken. And her residents that love her, whose proudest landmark has become a symbol of grief, of men and women cut down, simply for going to work. Of New Yorkers cut down, simply for going to work.

Our thoughts and prayers are with you.

JS said...

Thank you for sharing these lovely thoughts so candidly.

ryan field said...

Good post; excellent photo.

Abby Fowers said...

This is beautiful. I appreciate the wonderful message you have shared. I will dance!

Kitty said...

Here's an interesting, sad tale of how 9/11 affected freelance journalism:


Suja said...

It's a hard day to get through, thinking of all those people who lost their lives, those fathers, mothers, sons and daughters. We'll never forget them.
Thanks, Janet, for that post. Thanks for reminding us of the greatest gift of all - our time on this beautiful planet.