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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A Little Late but...

I didn't write a tribute post on 9/11. As I went about my daily routine of cruising the internet, there were plenty of them out there. I didn't feel like anything that I could write or say could do justice to what we, as a whole, were feeling.

I remember 9/11 quite clearly. I was at a meeting for our women's bible study that morning. When I got home, my sister called me and told me to turn on the TV. She lives up in NY and she sounded weird. I remember seeing the scenes on the news and thinking that it was happening as we spoke. She told me that no, this had all happened earlier. I was just seeing the constant replays of the plane's hitting the towers.

In the days that followed, there was no where you could turn where there wasn't coverage of the horror that happened that day. Besides having the images, soon you were hearing the voices. Yes, the voices of the victims from inside the towers or the planes leaving voice mails for their loved ones to say a final goodbye. To me, this was even more devastated than watching the towers collapse. To hear wives leaving tearful messages to their husbands - where they knew that they were going to die...it still makes me want to cry. In such a time, would you be able to calmly call your spouse and do such a thing? I can still hear one woman's message where she was tearfully telling her husband that she was "trapped in here...and I don't think we're going to get out". I can only hope that having made that call gave her some peace in the end. On that same note, as her husband, would you ever be able to erase that message??

I save most of the voice mails that I get from Frank. Mainly because they are so sweet and I love to hear them over and over. Would it be the same if it were his last and I knew that what followed was so horrific? would that message bring me happiness over hearing his voice one more time or make me want to cry?

I don't know what made me think about this today, but I did. All these years later and it was still so hard to watch all of the memorials. I did not know anyone who was killed that day. We only recently became friends with someone who survived it. They don't talk about it. Ever. I for one am thankful that they did survive and still grieve for those who didn't.

5 comments:

Chef Eureka said...

That's a nice post and you don't have to always do a tribute on the day of the event... sometimes doing it a little before or after is nice :)

Roschelle said...

very nice post. It was a tough time for everyone. It's amazing what maniacs will do in the name of "religion".

Vicki said...

Beautifully written, it put tears in my eyes. this is the part of 9-11 that not many people talk or think about. Except those that are still living it.

Anna said...

We can call them "electronic audio mementos"

You have written a very good text. So far, I haven't read any texts on anyone's blog about all those parting phone messages. This aspect of the tragedy was shown in the movie that was made about flight xxx. But I don't think any of us like to think about the real details of what that day must have been like for all of those people.
And just as you, I did not loose a loved one on that day.

The closest I come, is the daughter of one of my best friends. who happened to work as a waitress in one of the buildings near the World Trade Center. That building collapsed after the towers fell. She was scheduled to work the afternoon shift and was never in harm's way. But seven of her co-workers perished. Her mother says that it has taken her a long time to recover emotionally from this exeperience.

To return to what you wrote about saving your husband's telephone messages, it reminds me of a message that my late grandmother left on my answering-machine. I wanted to save it, because it was the only sample of her speaking voice that I had left. She was very special to me. She was the one who taught me Swedish. I can kick myself for never recording any of our lessons. Unfortunately this last message got recorded over by mistake by an incoming call of no importance; so it is lost.

Before audio-visual recording methods were invented people had to write down or draw a picture of someone or something that they really wanted to preserve. But even these new-fangled inventions have their limitations and are not always a better way of preserving a memory than paper and pencil. Technology changes and one thing-a-ma-jig makes an older one obsolete.

My mother has been careful in preserving mementos from the past. I was therefore very happy when we found a record, at her house, that was recorded on her wedding day. For the first time since I was 14 years old, I heard the voice of my grandfather, whom I dearly loved. It was recorded on a laquer-record. We bought a special grammophone with different speeds to play it.

Yes, record your husband's voice! And while you're at it, record your parent's, your grandparent's and anyone else's voice whom you love.
Do it!
Best wishes
Christina Wigren

Nani said...

i still have a message on my cell phone from Jessie - its about 2 yrs old and i just keep saving it and saving it- in a baby voice that she will never have again -she is calling daddy and says "daddy, daddy, oh o" so cute-