This Day…

For the past several days there have been photos, articles, memes and memories of September 11, 2001.  Each one pricks at my heart and brings the tears to my eyes.  Each one is a jab at what happened to our country.  I still feel anger and shock when I look at the pictures and read the articles.  It will always be like that, I think.

This time of year everyone asks, “Where were you that morning?”   or,  “What were you doing when it happened?”

These two questions cause me to realize that this day, with all the grieving associated with it, gives me pause.

We were in San Diego, three hours behind the east coast.  What was I doing when the planes hit the towers?   Sleeping.

That morning I woke up.  I woke up smiling.   My baby was turning 18 that day.   We were going to go to the DMV so she could get her drivers license.  We were going to celebrate this young woman who was a freshman in college.  We had dinner reservations with a friend of hers and her god-parents.  It was going to be a great day, a day to celebrate this woman who was starting out on her great adventure of life.

We did do everything we planned that day, but, although it was a bright sunny day outdoors, we were glued to the television, watching events unfold.   A depressing pall fell on everyone.

To this day, I feel conflicted on this day, I want to mourn what happened in our country, yet, I want to celebrate this person.  To me, this day is a joyful day, it is the day my youngest was born.   A day I celebrate daily in knowing she is in this world.  She completed our little family.  She has succeeded in so many areas of her life.  She has given this world Little Man.  She deserves to be celebrated for so many reasons.

A few years ago, another layer was added to this day.  18 years ago, our son-in-law, (Little Miss’s dad) received his first military I.D. card.   This man has served this country faithfully and has loved his family.

So, this day is filled with emotions for me.   Sadness, anger, pride, joy, hope.  I guess, in thinking about those things, it is a good day.   I will never forget, but the pride I have in my son-in-law and in my daughter will never die.  And because of the reason for my pride, I have joy and hope for the future because I know great things will happen because my family is who they are.

Thanks for stopping by today, Cathi(DAF)


September Thoughts…

There are certain times of the year that provoke a sense of reflection in me.  I write about these times often, for I believe that writing them down etches them in my mind more clearly.

The days leading up to the 11th of September is one of these seasons.  Tomorrow is Grandparents day, a holiday started in 1978.  I had no idea it was even a ‘thing’ until 1983 when I saw the first cards celebrating it.   I don’t even know who buys those cards, but each year I see them.

Tomorrow is the 15th anniversary of  9/11.  It is amazing to me that it has been 15 years.  It seems like yesterday that the horror of that day happened.  The images and repugnance reverberates to this day.  I will always remember and I will never forget.

But in the middle of these events is a sweet dance of my youngest daughter’s life.

In thinking on all of the above, it is amazing what stands out in vivid memory.  I can remember seeing those Grandparent Day cards being almost nine months pregnant, thinking I should buy one for my in-laws.  I thought I would send it from my oldest daughter, having her sign it and how they would love that.  I also thought that maybe my second  child would be born on that day.  I never got the card, and my baby did come on Grandparent’s Day.

I remember when she was born, looking at my sweet baby, a time that is burned into a mother’s mind.  Each child, so unique, so beautiful.  Seeing that baby for the first time and knowing that this look is the look you will cherish until your dying day.  I was handed my sweet child and looked down on her.  No sweet expression, just this scowl on her little face.  Staring up at me as if to say, “Lady, I am not happy.”  Literally, a scowl, one that still appears on her face this day, some  thirtysomething years later…  I looked down at her, laughed and said as only a mother can, “Well sweetie, you are the one who decided to come, I really had nothing to do with it.”    Yes, those sweet , sweet life moments I will never forget.

That morning fifteen years ago that sweet baby was up before me.  Hubby had already left for work, and her older sister was living on her own and on her way to work.  I came downstairs and wished her a happy birthday.  We were going for her driver’s test and I asked if she was ready.  She told me to turn on the t.v.  and horror hit me.  Last night as I thought on this, I thought of this child of mine.  She was basically alone when she first heard all of this on the radio.  I never thought of how any of this affected her.  What was going on in her mind, how did it color her birthday then and how does it affect her to this day?

Yes, it is funny how certain things stick out in your mind on different days.  Those are my thoughts this weekend.  The thought that comes most readily to mind is this.  I have been blessed with this child, now a grown woman.  Her life has filled mine with laughter.  Her life has brought me joy.  I asked the Lord early on what life lessons my children have taught me.  I wanted to know when they were young, so I could truly grasp the gifts they are.

My oldest has taught me unconditional love.  A lesson we all need to have.  To love , no matter what happens, how easy or difficult is may be.  That lesson has not only been for my oldest, but she taught me that for all areas of my life.

The birthday girl?  She taught me laughter.  I really do not think I laughed purely or openly until the day she was born.  She gave me the gift of mirth.  She has blessed me with being able to see the joy in all things.

So, happy birthday dear one.  Thank you for being you.  You truly are my special gift from Jesus.

                                                              ~Mom ~ Cathi (DAF)


Today I have no photos or clever sayings.  I have just read some blog posts both from the United States and abroad.  They are touching tributes that make my heart ache and my mind reel.

May God bless this country today.  May those who are pondering the events and what has transpired since turn to our God to ease their troubled spirits.  To find answers to the questions that plague them.

May our Lord give comfort to those who have lost loved ones, family, friends.  May those children who don’t remember or never met parents know that their parents died as heroes.

May our Lord cover this country with peace, security and most of all, hope.  Hope for a bright tomorrow.

We will never forget.


The Day Before….

Yesterday I wrote about my daughter’s birthday, and although the title of this post appears that this is another homage to her, it isn’t.

12 years ago tomorrow our country  changed.  It was a national day of horror.

Tomorrow there will be tributes and posts talking about the day.  I know, as last year I wrote about it along with a post about my daughter’s birthday.  They are tied together, as you know.

Last night, as I was trying to sleep, I thought about the significance of the day.  I thought about the posts that would be published on the 11th.

Then, I thought of the day before.  The day before the country changed.  Do we think of what we did on what would seem to be our last day of normal?  That day when we went about our business as usual.

This was my last day of what was the normal.  I woke up, put on my new glasses that I had just gotten the day before.  I went out to do some last-minute shopping after dropping my birthday girl off on campus.  I had to make certain I got the rest of the birthday gifts for my 18-year-old.  I picked up her favorite cake from her favorite bakery (White Chocolate Raspberry Mousse) .   I got the cake home and took the dog out.  I then went back out to get an anniversary gift.  I picked out a nice frame for a 50th anniversary gift.  Hubby and I were leaving the 12th of September to attend the 50th anniversary party of my friend’s parents.  She was the best friend in high school and her folks were my second set of parents.  Attending their party was a joyful family obligation.  We were excited to fly home in the fall.  It was going to be a great trip.

I then picked my girl up from her classes and set about to pack for our trip.  Presents were wrapped and cake was calling us to eat it early, but we were good.

That was the last day of the old normal.  Not exciting.  Nothing pressing.  Just an ordinary day.

Awaking the next day, the new normal set in.  It has been that way since.  I attempt to have red, white, and blue on all my decorations.  I determined to do this the day the new normal arrived.  It was my sign that we are Americans and proud of it.   When I hear the military planes over head from the nearby base, I look up, say a prayer of protection for our men and women and repeat to myself, ‘there goes the sound of freedom’.

12 years into the new normal.  This is a week for remembrance.  To honor those who fell.  To honor those who tried to rescue.  To honor those who are learning to survive.  May our dear Lord bless them with peace and health and security.

Thanks for stopping by today, DAF

A Day of Memories

I knew opening Facebook today that most posts would make mention of this day.  A day to remember.  A day to respect those who have given the utmost sacrifice, the families.  A day to stop and be silent for there are no words that can describe.   At least for me.  I think on this day and nothing can form in my mind.

A friend of mine posted today on Facebook what she was doing 11 years ago.  It started one of those run on posts where everyone shared what they were doing.  It’s that type of day.  A day to remember and not forget.

This day is a strange day for me.  This is 9-11.  This is the day that changed our country.  I know this.  I feel this.  It breaks my heart.   But, 9-11 changed for me 29 years ago.  That was the day when I first got a glimpse of my precious little girl.

That day 29 years ago was a day to remember.  I was alone.  I had a dear friend whom I had met overseas with me.  She was my coach through labor and delivery.  She laughed with me and cried with me and held my hand when it needed held.  Her husband watched my older daughter.  He got their girls up in the wee hours of the morning to come to my house and watch my daughter.  They were family that I didn’t have close to me.

They had to do this because my dear hubby was on a ship serving our country.  He was continents away from me and would not know until after the fact that his baby girl was  born.

In thinking of this day my heart wonders what emotion to show.  Respect and remembrance is what usually comes out.  This is because I love our country.  I love being a flag waving person who cries when talking about it.  I love our military, for I know what it is like to serve (as all spouses of military personnel serve also).  I know the sacrifice that comes with a decision to serve in the military.

What was I doing eleven years ago?  I was in California, and getting up to take a birthday girl to get her driver’s license on her 18th birthday.  We thought about not going, but since we had an appointment we went to the DMV.  We got into the building and started standing in line, only about 4 people ahead of us and after 2 more fell into line behind us, we realized the doors locked and the parking lot was filled with Highway Patrol men and women.  The usual process is the people taking the tests go out individually and the parents wait in the waiting room.  Not that day.  Everyone taking the test went out in a group, they all took off in a quick rotation.  The parents all gathered in the portico waiting for their child to return.  We walked them back into the office after a quick test.  They all passed.  They all got into the passenger side as we each drove off to our homes to watch events.

We had planned a dinner party for that evening.  The restaurant called us to see if we were still planning on coming.  We said no, then called them back and said we would be there.  The streets were quiet, we half expected to see tumbleweeds rolling down the empty streets.  But, we were determined no terrorist was going to ruin an 18th birthday celebration.

Yes, it is a weird day for our family.  But, as I listen to stories on the news and as I have learned in my life, the beauty is in living.  Taking the crisp blue autumn skies and thanking our Creator for them  Reading posts that wish happiness and joy for another year of living.  Reading posts celebrating not only my daughter, but her new-born son.  Proof that life goes on.  Life continues and the best way to respect the memory of those lost is to live our life, love our life and love our families, those who are family by blood and those who are family by our hearts.

Thanks for stopping by today.  As always, DAF