Saturday was the 20th anniversary of 9/11. Like most Americans, I remember where I was and what I was doing that day. The memories are burned into my brain as are the feelings and emotions I had. In school the day started like any other, and then the news started to filter through the hallways. Administrators and teachers made the decision not to let us what what was unfolding on my school’s closed circuit TV system that day. In my opinion, it would have been a better decision if they had, but I digress. When I knew I wanted to write about that day, as I watched the remembrances and coverage Saturday, it took some time to figure out how I wanted to approach it. The answer came quicker than anticipated.
I wanted to blog about what we (myself included) can do to truly never forget. I like the hashtag every year, but it made me wonder if we truly never forget the lives lost and forever changed by that day, or is it just a hashtag every year for nothing more than likes on social media? If you follow this blog on Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter: you saw me post remembrances with the never forget hashtag as well as seemingly everybody else in the world. I was moved to do more, however.
This post is me doing more. What follows are a list of suggestions about how to live always honoring those who perished and are forever impacted by that horrible, world-changing day. My ideas are in no particular order. They are below.
- Tell the people who matter to you that they do every chance you get. When I say everybody, I mean EVERYBODY who is important to you.
- Say I love you to those you do often.
- ALWAYS show up for the people who matter to you
- Dream big: bigger than seems possible and do the work to make those dreams reality
- Take chances: don’t allow fear to stop you from doing anything. In other words: be brave.
- Only buy stuff you need and stuff you love
- Have comfort food and/or dessert every so often
- Take the dream trip if you can
- Make memories
- Take pictures, but also be present by putting your phone and camera down as well
- Find what brings/gives you joy and do it on purpose frequently
- Err on the side of love and kindness with everybody who comes across your path…ALWAYS
- Help somebody else every time the chance presents itself
- Listen to those who have different views and stories and learn from them
- Practice gratitude daily
If we (myself included) do the things listed above on a consistent basis, we will honor those lost and impacted by 9/11. As an added bonus: we might actually find our way to back to being the best of ourselves like on 9/12 and the days + weeks that followed, which is what I always hope for and work towards in every aspect of my own life, daily. I still believe that’s possible for all of us in the world.