A few weeks ago, I blogged about that feeling we all had after Sept. 11, 2001 - fear, sadness, anger, hopefulness, and every other feeling we could ever experience. We greeted strangers on the street. We, as a nation, banded together.
I wrote about never losing that feeling, as a wife of a Soldier who has deployed continuously since October 2001, because I couldn't, and didn't want to. Every deployment reminded me why he was going overseas, and every day he was home between deployments I knew not to take those days for granted.
I try to be nicer to people - no one but them knows what they're going through. I talk to strangers, try to make them smile, ask them how they're doing, and really listen when people talk to me. When Addison talks, I listen. I sat among families at a memorial service many years ago, and heard a fallen Ranger's dad trying to control his weeping. It was one of the most heartbreaking sounds I have ever heard, and I have never forgotten it. So yeah, if my son is speaking, I can put down my phone for a few minutes, or tear my eyes away from the TV to really listen to him; that father will never have the chance to talk to his son again.
The last few years have divided us as a country. Adults have taken to calling other adults names as a way to make themselves feel better about their own political leanings, beliefs, and morals. Just knock it the fuck off, okay? If you feel the need to be mean to someone, especially those you know, I suggest counseling to find out why you harbor such hatred. People continue to hide behind technology as a way to try to belittle others - stop it.
So what does this all have to do with Billy Joel? His song, This Is the Time, says, "This is the time to remember, 'cause it will not last forever, these are the days to hold onto, though we won't although we'll want to..." After the horrific events at the Boston Marathon yesterday, make this the time to remember humanity, caring, and heroism. Hold onto to those feelings, and turn them into a positive thing.