Life shouldn't be taken
In the aftermath of the terrorist attacks,
many are still in mourning. The destruction of Sept. 11 left behind bereaved
family members of many
casualties. There are thousands of orphans
from one-parent homes too young to understand where their parents are,
too young to even
What happened on that day is tragic. Most
of us who weren't directly affected have already acknowledged that and
gone on with our lives,
knowing that America isn't as secure and
safe as we'd like to think it is.
The true tragedy, however, is that as we
returned to our daily routines, many of us failed to learn an invaluable
lesson: Life, and the relationships
we are all blessed with, should never
be taken for granted.
There is no telling how many more will
give their lives in the coming war. None of us have any certainty that,
even if we do see tomorrow, our
lives as we know them will continue as
they are today.
Many people, including myself, aren't completely
convinced that another attack isn't about to be launched. No matter how
close to normalcy
we've returned, a degree of paranoia still
plagues people's minds.
There is no way to know if the people around
us right now will still be here tomorrow. This could be the last time you
see the person sitting on
your right or your left. Death has a way
of sneaking up on people.
Last spring, relatives I hadn't seen in
years passed away before I could say goodbye. One was my favorite uncle;
the other was my
great-grandma. She was my best friend
when I was 10 -- we lived in a small town and there were no girls my age
Eventually we moved away, and the last
time I visited her was when I was in high school. During that visit, she
asked if I would sing for her. I
hated performing, and even the pleading
look in her eyes couldn't make me change my mind. I refused, and later
decided I might sing for her the
next time I would see her.
I always took it for granted that she would
be there when I returned. I wasn't even prepared for her death.
In an impending wartime, it's important
to realize the frailty of life. If the people who lost their loved ones
that morning knew that they would never
see their husbands, wives, fathers or
mothers again, they might have taken advantage of that last opportunity
to say goodbye.
It's important to remember to live each
day as if it were the last. There's no better time than the present to
try new things, explore new places and
meet new people.
But most importantly, don't underestimate
the value of a good relationship.
There's nothing more regrettable than learning
of someone's death before you had the chance to show that person you care.