The Circle of Life
We are up in B.C this week. At an idyllic place called Tofino where the scenery is so splendid, it leaves me speechless (and that is not easy!). Our intention was to uplug, stroll the beach, nap & read, experience any kind of weather other than the African savannah heat that has plagued LA recently—and celebrate our sixteenth wedding anniversary.
But today is September 11th.
It’s two days after our wedding day. Just like it always was and always will be.
Just like it was back in 2001 when, as a country, we lost our innocence.
I remember that day as a collective gut punch.
Sorrow on a level I will not soon forget.
And so, no matter where we travel to celebrate love, this day will follow us; our narrative as a couple forever woven into the fabric of the heavy wet coat I put on every year around this time.
Back in 2001, I found it viscerally impossible to be happy after the morning of Sept. 11th. I went from being blissed out—to feeling sad, vulnerable and scared. It changed everything. The viscosity of the air—my understanding of life—and what if means to feel “safe”. It cast a pall over what should have been the happiest time of my life. Even today, all of these years later it tugs at me, trying to recreate that same level of loss.
I was walking on the beach this morning thinking, “It’s September eleventh. Who am I to be so happy?”
Then the voice in my head answered back, “Who are you NOT to? Life is short. Carpe Diem, Seize the day.” And I’m reminded of sixteen years ago, and my sweet, brand new husband of two days, consoling my inconsolable self. “All of those people would want us to be happy and enjoy life”, he said, trying to pull me out of the abyss. “They would if they could.”
And eventually, I believed him.
So the years have worn all of the sharp edges of sadness smooth like time has a tendency to do, turning it over and over like a pebble in a stream—transforming it into a quiet melancholy. But even that is fleeting these days. It visits only for a moment. Then, I see a dog running and smiling on the beach and happiness bubbles up from my feet and rushes to my face and I start to smile—and just at the point where in the past I would start to feel fragile, I ask myself, “Who am I to be so happy? And now myself answers loud and clear—”Who am I NOT to.”
And the circle of life continues…