What Was it All For?

I think of this picture, this man so so often. My son was three weeks old when the towers went down and I wondered, what in the world was he just born into. I think of this man, and his health. Did you know many firemen have died of cancer that worked through this event?

Whatever your "theory" is, the truth of the matter still remains- there were men and women who died and have become sick and died, all because they chose a line of work, a passion if you will, that meant, they may be required to give their all.


Two days ago was the anniversary of burying my husband. Oof, that is still not easy to type out. In any case, I am still moved thinking of that funeral, seeing the graves of soldiers gone before, those who may have given their lives in battle, and those who served quietly going seemingly unnoticed through life after doing what they felt God calling the to do. I wonder about those people, about their families.

What was it all for?


I think about grieving families today, marking another date on the calendar that at first was hard to take in, but as the years have gone on, perhaps only they remembered.

Sometimes on this day, I think of my grandpa, stomping the beach at Normandy and his stories of guys who died immediately because in jumping from the boat their packs were so heavy they drowned. No big heroic act killed them, only that their load was too heavy.

I wonder how many have passed away because their load was too heavy and no one could or thought to help them. These were weird things I think about a lot. What was it all for?


Death and loss are palpable to me now, not arbitrary and "those people" related. Even before my husband died, I knew of too many kids who were shot and killed for stupid reasons. Random reasons.

What was it all for anyway?


 


Every year this day grows a little fainter, the sting of watching thousands perish in one fell swoop, including fire fighters who knew the risks of their job, that sting- it diminishes a little every year. It’s the way it is with tragedies, isn’t it? Normandy, Pearl Harbor, the Vietnam War... all events I have had family members intimately a part of, yet each year it grew fainter in the eyes of the community, however fresh it still was/is for them.

This day rolls around during a year with an untold amount of chaos, lies and anger. Conspiracies abound over this day, yet, no one truly knows do they? Only the Lord.

Today I ask myself, is this still the same nation who stood together on September 12th, in prayer, vowing to defend our rights as a nation? I need not think too hard on that one because the answer is obvious.

Are we still surrounded by men and women who rose up with a righteous anger, and were willing to fight for our freedoms- together? No, no we are not. A handful perhaps, but surrounded by? Not a chance.


 

I grew up military. I married a man who served. Fighting and defending justice is in my blood. Seeking out justice for those who can’t is all I can think of- it’s all I know.

When I sit back and survey the goings on of our nation, it’s astounding to me the lack of fight we have as a nation. Fighting for what’s right rather than fighting for fighting sake.

Many are afraid to get sick, let alone die.

How tragic. How tragic that after 21 years, we’ve so quickly forgotten that men and women willingly died for us, for our freedoms, not just then, but for decades before.

And now, at the thought of an illness, a riot, a political take over, a rouge election, a raid, a whatever you can come up with that has happened in the 12 months since i sat down to write this- we still roll up the sidewalks, don the hazmat suits, post the memes (the keyboard warriors still amaze me) and still, fight against each other.


How tragic indeed.


I wonder, what is this fireman think of right now, when he surveys our nation. Does he ask the question- “what was it all for?” I imagine he, like me, would rather keep working and fighting for that which matters. Through loss in my own life, of not just my husband, but failures I've experienced in recent years, it's still all I can think of. It's still all I want to do.


I pray it wasn't all for nothing. We still have the power and capacity to do the right thing, which is always speak up for those who cannot, do love those who have not, and fight for those who are not able.