This anniversary makes my heart hurt.
It is such a dark day that comes along at one of the most beautiful times of year.
Below is a piece (slightly updated) that I wrote a few years ago.
And here we are again.
I remember that day and all its horrors so vividly. I remember the endless aching that followed as I and everyone else futilely tried to make sense of something so violent and cruel and of course, completely senseless.
I remember pouring over the “New York Times’ Portraits of Grief” where the paper honored each and every victim with poignant, beautiful details of their lives.
And for some reason, Michele Coyle-Eulau always stuck with me. I didn’t know her. Only what I read. She had three sons, 2, 5 and 7 years-old.
Matthew, Mark and Eric. The children who were waiting for her to come home that day.
I wasn’t even a mom yet. But those ages. Those boys. I couldn’t stop thinking about them.
Michele was a working mom, who juggled a full and hectic schedule, including a three day a week job as a systems analyst. She worked one day from home and two days on the 96th floor of Tower One. The World Trade Center.
She was 38 years-old.
At night her husband would yell out to her, “Michelle, it’s 11 o’clock! Could you just come to bed?”
And the piece ended like this…
What took her so long to get to bed? Packing lunches, making grocery lists, arranging play dates. “I never understood,” her husband said. “Now I do.”
Since 9-11, I’ve been thinking of Michele and her family.
I’m absolutely sure that I always will.
And not a day goes by that I don’t hear the roar of an engine, look up and notice a plane flying high above.
I always look up. And I always think of that day and the nearly 3,000 victims who were robbed of their lives.
And the ones who died from inhaling toxic fumes at ground zero.
And the ones who gave their lives fighting overseas.
Every single day.
There is no forgetting.