But the Truth Isn’t ALWAYS Beautiful

So here’s the real deal… the truth isn’t always beautiful. Sometimes it’s ugly, scary, earth-shattering. On this day, 17 years ago, the truth, for many people, became the latter. As we remember and honor all of the lives lost in terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 and numerous other occasions, we’re forced to somehow come to terms with the fact that hate exists in the world, sometimes in a senseless and violent way, and we never know when the next attack will occur or who the next victims will be. It could be tomorrow. It could be us. These are the realities we uncover as we get older and our rose-colored glasses start to turn a dusty shade of gray. These are the realities to which I’d prefer to remain ignorant, if given the choice. This is the reason I don’t watch the news. And while I can certainly understand and appreciate the reasons to be knowledgeable about the world outside of our own personal bubbles, this is why I’d rather not know. Sometimes, ignorance truly is bliss. As I reflect on the harsh truths of uncertainty and tragedy and the events of September 11, 2001, I thought it would be fitting to share this brief piece I wrote on September 25, 2014 following some news I’d rather not have heard…

 

I love fall. This is my time. Colorful leaves, hayrides, sweatshirts, pumpkin everything. But today, as the rain drowns the the beginning of the season, of my time, I sit in my Philadelphia office, above the rumbling of the subway cars, with more than a little anxiety. Instead of thinking about the myriad ways I could enjoy the upcoming sunshiney weekend, my mind is consumed with the news of an “imminent” terrorist attack on subway systems in the US. Now, every rumble below me seems louder than it used to be, every bang or screech suspicious. I could spend the rest of my fall days worrying. I could spend this season in a downward spiral of fear. But then they win, right? So I vow, instead, to enjoy my hot pumpkin spice latte (insert white-girl stereotype here) and make plans to soak in the sun and let my hair blow in the breeze. I will pray, in my way, for the safety of this country and the innocents everywhere who want no part of this, who should have no part in this. And, until peace wraps its warm arms around this Earth, I will play in piles of red and orange leaves, enjoy the chill of the fall, and appreciate with all my heart the fact that I still have a life to live.

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