Wednesday, September 11, 2013

9/11 Running

Today I ran with NYC, the Pentagon, and Pennsylvania on my mind. 

September 11th is a day our country will never forget.  We will never forget the terrible images and horrifying stories that day brought us. We will always know where we were when the first tower went down. Twelve years later (and I imagine for all the years to come), the wound is remains only lightly healed.  It is something that has subsided from our daily national consciousness, but remains just under the surface ready to flow free at the slightest reminder of that day. And every year on this day we come together to remember not only the lives forever lost to terrorism, but to honor the heroics of those men and women who were willing to make the ultimate sacrifice to save people they had never met.  We remember the devastation of evil but also rejoice in the beauty of the true human spirit. We remember that our entire nation came together, wept together, and healed together. 

There is this game I like to play while I run the 1.52 mile stretch of my street that makes up the first part of so many of my routes. I like to try to count all of the American flags my neighbors display in their yards and on their houses. I pretty much never get the same number because, not surprisingly, running is one of those activities done better and more safely with your eyes on the road ahead of you. I can tell you though, the number is always impressively high. My last count was 52. Let me repeat that. My last count was 52. That's 52 American flags on my one little portion of street!! And I'm not talking about just today on 9/11 or on the 4th of July or Memorial Day. I am telling you that every day of the year these flags fly proudly in my neighborhood. Every time I make that run, I can't help but be proud of my neighbors, my community, and my country. Those 52+ flags serve as a daily (well near daily) reminder of our national commonality. In a time when our country is so often divided with vitriol, intolerance, and ignorance those flags remind me of the true meaning of being American. They remind me that beneath all of our differences and all of our arguments,there lies a common pride and drums a common heartbeat. We are Americans. All of us. Regardless of race, age, gender, sexual preference, or religion. We are all Americans and that means we are all the same. 

Here are a couple of the flags I run past so often:
Hopefully, my wonderfully patriotic neighbors are also wonderfully understanding of the crazy runner lady who stops to take pictures of their yards. 

No comments:

Post a Comment