Thursday, September 11, 2008

On This Anniversary

Do you see those little iron stars on the side of the brick column? I was under the impression that they were pretty little iron stars until my husband, ever the engineer, told me that they are something like huge nuts on the end of massive threaded iron rods that hold the building together. Pretty, and pretty essential.

We celebrated our 16th wedding anniversary last month with Mexican food and a bowling fiesta with our four children.

Friends celebrated their parents' 50th anniversary last summer with a lawn party. Grandma still fit in her wedding dress. Grandpa made fun of her black stockings peeking out from her bone-white dress. Their great-granchildren cut teeth on barbecued ribs while helium balloons bobbed in the apple orchard.

Anniversaries call to mind a celebration of lives lived well, milestones met and passed with joy and sweet memories. But today is a different kind of anniversary.

Today many of us will remember where we were when we heard the news of 9/11/01. Today there are many other anniversaries, unspeakably sad ones, being made around the world by wars and natural disasters and abject poverty.

Those little iron stars? They're the studs of happiness, essential. They're pretty, yes, but as heavy as life and as impossible to bend as optimism.

The anniversary parties and birthday balloons and coffee dates are holding together the bricks of our carefully built lives against all odds. To celebrate the joyous occasions, I think, is to honor the fragility of life and humanity's enduring passion to live it.

I hope you are not mourning anyone this anniversary. But the only good I can find in an anniversary such as 9/11 is to cling to the goodness of and in life.


Toni said...

Absolutely beautiful! Thank you.

Barb said...

I just loved this, M.

Agent K said...

Amazing writing. Beautiful indeed!

SuburbanCorrespondent said...

I remembered. All day I remembered.

And I also remembered to mail your book (amazing but true)!

Alexis - Chickie Momma said...

This was a wonderful blog post!