Sunday, September 11, 2011

As Much as I Remember about 9/11/01. Ten Years After.

Listening to some Rush this morning to ready me for the picnic gig this morning. Neil Peart, one of my greatest inspirations. It's a National Day of Remembrance, supposedly somber, but for me, it will be mostly a rejoice. Playing the outdoor service with my band, my brother at my side, followed by some typical Lutheran BBQ fun (?). (Did I mention there's bingo? Yeah, I'll be gone by then.) My hand held out well after last night's service, not numbing much at all until a song that's a sustained pattern with the right hand hitting the hi hat for 3 minutes solid, which taxes my injury.

Broke down the gear last night after church, moved it to the room in the school where we'll take it outside and assemble it on the church yard. Got my real cymbals out of the storage room, and was amazed that my guitarist told me I could start using my cymbals in the sanctuary to augment my electronic kit, when he said a few months ago that I couldn't. (They sound so much better than the rubber cymbals.) Started rat-a-tat-tatting on my Rogers Dynasonic snare with my fingers and excitement about the picnic gig poured through me.

Today's service is identical to the one last night, save for the addition of the bell and adult choirs. The sermon for the weekend is based on Ecclesiastes 3:1-15, or as we in the rock music world know it as, The Byrds' "Turn, Turn, Turn." ("To everything, there is a season...") We're remembering September 11, 2001 this weekend, praying for the continued safety of our country, our leaders, and to keep the motherfucking terrorists away.

What's with the heightened terror alert on the country this weekend? Is Al Qeada really that stupid that they'd strike us twice when we're most expecting it? Sheesh. If they ever WERE ballsy enough to strike us again, or any terrorists for that matter, they'd do it when we least expect it. I don't trust national security and their team of terrorist finders. I can't even get on an airplane with my medication bag without facing chaotic scrutiny. And I'm a white suburban mom. Dudes, you're looking in the wrong places. Anyway...

(Just switched from Rush to Sebadoh's "Magnet's Coil." Always a good stress reliever. I think every politician and worried American should listen to this song today:)

In 2001, I woke up early in the morning to a phone call from the school where I was teaching asking me to substitute on 9/11. I told the department that I couldn't because my husband had to work 1st shift, which turned out to be wrong. He was, in actuality, working 3-11:30 that night. So I stayed home with Craig, Luke waking up around 7am. He was a year and a half old at the time, a scampering toddler.

I have no recollection as to what made us turn on the television to see what was unfolding around the country, but we watched as the second plane hit the Twin Towers. At that point, I called my mom, who was already at work, and told her what was happening. For some reason, feeling safer, the 3 of us (Craig, Luke and myself) sat huddled together on the living room floor. We could still hear planes from O'Hare in Chicago swooshing over our house, shell shocked. I remember asking Craig, "Is this the end of the world?" He said, as we held out child tightly, "I don't know." Then the Pentagon got hit, then Pennsylvania. I kept calling my mom, telling her "Another plane crashed." I was in shock.

Soon thereafter, they declared the country a no-fly zone, and in a matter of a couple of hours, it was silent over our house. Normally, we hear the jets overhead every minute and a half, as we live in a suburb about 10 minutes away from O'Hare airport. It was a beautiful, warm, sunny day, and quiet as a dead cemetery outside.

I didn't want Craig to go to work that afternoon, but he couldn't stay home with me. So after he left, I took Luke for a walk in his stroller to my aunt and uncle's house, who lived within walking distance of our house at the time. The walk over there was silent and creepy. We all sat out on their patio for a couple of hours, playing with Luke, seeing military helicopters and planes (with strikingly loud engines) flying overhead, heading east towards downtown.

Decided to have my mom and my grandma over for dinner as a distraction and to band together. When Luke was a wee one, this was a regular occurrence since Craig alternated his work schedule from 1st to 2nd shift a lot and I was left alone with the baby a lot. I cooked and tried to relax with some wine (this was a few years before I became an alcoholic). We were all comforted to be together, sharing tears and shock and disbelief while trying not to let Luke notice how unsettled we were. I guess we gave Luke a bath and we all assisted in putting him to bed before the Grandmas left, and I waited for Craig to come home, still in shock, still watching the aftermath on television.

Later, I found out that one of my oldest friends from childhood, Heidi, lost her husband Jeffrey, in the Twin Towers crash. That was as close to the situation as I was personally affected.

That's as much as I remember about 2001. Don't ask me what happened September 12, 2001. People went back to work. Eventually, planes started flying to O'Hare again. Life went on, albeit differently.

"There is an appointed time for everything. And there is a time for every event under heaven ~
2 A time to give birth, and a time to die; A time to plant, and a time to uproot what is planted.
3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; A time to tear down, and a time to build up.
4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; A time to mourn, and a time to dance.
5 A time to throw stones, and a time to gather stones; A time to embrace, and a time to shun embracing.
6 A time to search, and a time to give up as lost; A time to keep, and a time to throw away.
7 A time to tear apart, and a time to sew together; A time to be silent, and a time to speak.
8 A time to love, and a time to hate; A time for war, and a time for peace.
9 What profit is there to the worker from that in which he toils? 10 I have seen the task which God has given the sons of men with which to occupy themselves. 11 He has made everything appropriate in its time. He has also set eternity in their heart, yet so that man will not find out the work which God has done from the beginning even to the end. 12 I know that there is nothing better for them than to rejoice and to do good in one's lifetime; 13 moreover, that every man who eats and drinks sees good in all his labor, it is the gift of God. 14 I know that everything God does will remain forever; there is nothing to add to it and there is nothing to take from it, for God has so worked that men should fear Him. 15 That which is has been already, and that which will be has already been, for God seeks what has passed by."

Time to go set up the band equipment for the morning. It's another bright, sunny, and hopefully turning-warmer day. I get to play, I get to see my son, I get fellowship with both my church and biological family, and I think it'll be a good day.

(Wow, don't follow up Rush and Sebadoh with The Smiths when you're trying to think positively. Just my two cents' worth.)

No comments: