Wednesday, September 16, 2009

September 16

I haven't been able to bring myself to post over Sarge's 9-11 post. I'm feeling extra sad around this year's anniversary, for lots of reasons. I learned some things about Sarge's experience that I hadn't known before. Reading his story was a little window into a place I'd never been. It only served to remind me that I can't always protect the people I love most in the world. I can't protect Hedgehog, and I can't protect my husband either. It's a scary, sad revelation, one I've had often before but never as strongly as I did when I read that 9-11 story.

Sarge can take care of himself, of course. He's done it in that and even worse situations.

Still, when you love people that much, you wish you could be there with them, holding their hand as they go through the bad parts. I know that on September 11, my place was at home with my baby, taking care of her while Sarge went out to do his job as he had to; and later, my job was to make a cozy, safe place for him to come home to when the work was over. But it never seemed like I did enough. I guess I'm feeling guilty too--a pointless but inescapable emotion that I haven't been able to rationalize away, not in all these years.


Meanwhile, Hedgehog started third grade. It feels like a milestone, and I had planned on interviewing her again as I did last year, but my heart just wasn't in it and finally she fumed "Mama, these questions are half-baked!" and huffed off. I'll try again...

17 comments:

nick said...

I bet plenty of people with loved ones involved in 9/11 felt they weren't doing enough to support and sustain them. It must have been such an incredibly shocking and traumatic experience to go through. But you can only give what you're able to give. No need to feel guilty.

Brian Miller said...

and yet you have today to make the most of in your love for Sarge and Hedgie...thats all we are promised. maybe a tomorrow, but don't wait to find out. and while that may seem a rather depressing statement now that i read it...just make the most of it.

Megan said...

I had a hard time reading it. I can understand your reluctance.

Best of luck to Hedgie in third grade!

Brandy Rose said...

I agree, one of the hardest things is not being there for the ones you love during difficult times.

mapstew said...

Wouldn't life be easier if we didn't love folk?

Miserable yes!

But easier.

Lots of love to you and hedgie and Sarge.

xxx + x (you get an extra x today.)

otin said...

The only way to not worry about the ones that we love is to not love anyone, and that is not an option, so, I think that loving your family as much as you do and looking out for the things that you can is all that you can do. Ask Sarge how much it meant to him to have that nice home to return to? Sometimes love and moral support can move mountains!

Baino said...

I'm with Otin, we can't all be active participants in these things but having a home, a family, love and affection are sometimes all you need to hold it together. Don't feel guilty, you did what you could and probably what was necessary.

kylie said...

guilt seems to always be with us, no matter what we do or how hard we try.
you and hedgie and sarge seem to me to have almost the perfect family life/ marriage so try to feel the joy that comes from that and let all the peripherals stay where they belong.

jeez, didnt mean to sound so bossy...

i thought hedgie huffing about half baked questions was utterly hilarious!

xx

PI said...

You're a Mum - guilt comes with the package. Just love 'em and hug 'em. A lot.

Ronda Laveen said...

I think most of us felt helpless...like we couldn't do enough.

But, you know you're in a pickle when a neophyte 3rd grader dis's your interview questions.

merelyme said...

Does Hedgie listen to Jimmy Buffet?!

The Idle Devil said...

Sept 11 does remind us all of how vulnerable we are. Hedgie seems more grown up now :)

The Unbearable Banishment said...

Same comment as last post: we're alive. We were lucky. It's time to embrace that. It'll make you feel all warm and gooey inside.

underOvr (aka The U) said...

Hi Leah,

Life is fragile and it's in those moments when I experience just how delicate life is, that I realize how fortunate I am to have family and friends.

Losing loved ones is not something I rejoice in but I have learned to channel my pain by remembering the joy their life gave me. I use that memory to encourage me and to live my life in honor of them.

Saying that you feel tells me that you are honorable. We choose to live our lives honorably, to the best of our ability, while we have the opportunity. What you've shared speaks volumes; it's enough for me. I thank you.

U

Leah said...

Thank you for these comments. You are all kind, funny, wise people.

xo

Knitter in an Urban Zoo said...

I appreciate your perspective and your ability to sit back when you need to do so. Hedgie is a hoot, though, half-baked questions...goodness.

muralimanohar said...

It kills me that we can't be the ones to protect them at all times. My ds has diabetes. And he is not the type to be obsessively in control of it for the rest of his life. Which means, at some point in his life, after he is grown and not under my care anymore, he is going to be experiencing major effects from it. I want so bad to be the one there, protecting, and caring for, and controlling every little bit of it, cause I KNOW he's not going to be as on top of it as he needs to be. But I can't. And it kills me. :(