Monday, September 11, 2006

10,000 Children

That's the number of children they estimate who lost a parent on this day five years ago. Whether it's entirely accurate it doesn't matter. It's still an unfathomable loss.

This morning my family listened as President Bush's motercade sped through our streets on the lower east side to have breakfast with a fire house three blocks from our apartment. This morning it was another skyscraper, this time the Empire State Building, that I watched from my window. Mercifully, the orange glow it cast was from the morning sun. Five years ago it was the Twin Towers, first smoking, then burning and finally falling that I watched from our place in Manhattan's fish market.

The rabbit, I am thankful to say, will never know about this day except as a piece of history -- much like D-Day or the anniversary of Pearl Harbor meant to me growing up.

But all I have to do is look up on mornings like today with the unearthly perfect blue September sky, and cotton balls of clouds gliding across the sky -- exactly as it was that unfairly ethereal day -- and I am scrambling out of bed after hearing a large boom, and standing in my living room again, looking at a trail of glitter float from a gaping hole in a tall tall building.

I picked up the rabbit today and kissed her warm, wriggly body. She said, "I love you mama." And how grateful am I that I am here for her, that she can see me smile, and hear me say back to her, "I love you too rabbit."

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