The Morning After
I will admit that this is not the entry that I had originally planned to post. The one last week leaned more on the serious side, so I wanted something lighthearted and frivolous. I did not realize as I was preparing a new one that yesterday was the 15th Anniversary of 9/11. And in reality, my first attempt was in fact just that, frivolous and trivial. It just did not feel like the right way to go.
Now I do not claim to have a better way to retell anything about the tragedy that unfolded. I have no new information. Nor do I ever have any intention of using this blog, or any of my writings, to post anything political in nature. That being said, I do have some thoughts that I want to share with you.
I want to talk about The Morning After.
The moment a tragedy or adversity strikes in our world there is a rush of adrenaline. And even shock. In those initial minutes or even hours our minds are blank and our emotional equilibrium is off. We need time to process the events. And those events do not have to be as momentous as the Twin Towers. We have all faced a ‘tower’ in our life that came crashing down around us. Not skyscrapers made of steel; but ones that take the form of divorce, bankruptcy, illness, the loss of a loved one. That leave us reeling with disbelief and fear. We question why and how and it can seem as if the very core of our being is shaken. And for a while, a night, a short season, we despair. But my friends, that is not where we stay.
I am of the belief that it is in the morning after where our story begins again. Because that is the time when our focus shifts outward and decisions start to be formed that will chart the direction of our responses. Our resolve becomes firm. We choose to be strong and not succumb to fear. We choose to tackle the pressing details so as not to lose our power to others. We explore options and plans so we do not remain a victim. That is the key for how the strength shifts. Whether it is an outside force, or an internal struggle, as long as we operate from a victim’s position, the ‘other’ side has won. Please do not allow that to take hold and make you feel powerless and defeated. Because you do not have to be either of those things. We possess more strength and courage then we realize. Sometimes it doesn’t show up until we are tested, but it always shows up. And while we cannot control how and when bad things happen to us, we do; oh yes we do, have control over our reactions to them.
Ok, I can feel myself getting caught up in the moment. I am certainly not a ‘name it / claim it’ kind of girl. I understand there are certain life realities and at times we are required to deal with painful circumstances. I just want to impress upon you my belief that attitude and gratitude can go a very long way. A positive outlook is vital to facing down our struggles. Having a grateful heart for our tremendous blessings helps to keep us balanced and moving forward.
I do not know what towers may be attacked in your life, or who may be trying to hijack your joy. Just remember this; it is only for a season. Know there are people around you who will care, support and uplift you. Believe in yourself and in your worth. Pray. Trust. Resolve. The pain may be crushing today, but it is not a burden you have to bear forever. Tomorrow is a new day and the sunrise of the morning after will help to chase away the shadows.
And in a closing thought, I want to share one other thing with you. It is something that I myself had not realized until today. The number 19. That is the number of hijackers used to carry out the horror of that day we vow to never forget. I did some research and that figure does appear to be correct, even though it surprised me at first. All that damage, pain, death and destruction was carried out by 19 individuals who were committed, even unto death, for evil things. What if today we could do the opposite of that? What if just a handful of us could harness that type of dedication to spread love, joy, hope and encouragement? To be sure hate does not carry more power than love. Right?? We should see what good we could accomplish if we all really made that a priority.