Tuesday Thoughts…Puerto Rico

I have been pretty much confined to my house for the last 4-5 days because of the pain and discomfort in my right shoulder, collarbone and both arms.  It’s been driving me batshit crazy.  I’m not accustomed to being held down by physical limitations like this.  But, it has given me time to get some writing done, attend to emails, organize my paperwork on my desk and do much inner reflecting.  I’ve basically spent far too much time in my own head!  I can basically recite the news broadcasts because I’ve watched them so much, over and over.  Yes, far, far too much time alone and secluded in my house!

I’ve been consuming coffee and smoking way too much as well.  That’s one of the drawback of being at home, in one place, for too long a period of time.  I’ve done a huge amount of reading and studying, as I am trying to educate myself about some new stuff to write about and I’d like the article to sound intelligent at least!

I’ve spent some time looking into new investments and venues of enterprise.  I got a couple of tips on making some investments that I am seriously considering.  I will be sure to share more on that at a later date, once things are more finalized with it.  But I must say, it’s really exciting stuff!

I’ve been keeping up with Facebook and Twitter feeds, which have been inundated with stuff about Trump and the NFL.  What everyone SHOULD be most concerned with at this moment is Puerto Rico.  That poor country, which is also a US Territory and who’s citizens are American citizens, is really in bad shape.  Hurricane Maria, on top of Irma a mere few days beforehand, really devastated the country.  I don’t think we have seen the real extent of the horror there because it’s still very difficult to get TV crews onto the island nation to report on what’s going on!  Plus, there is a severe shortage of food, water, medical supplies, medication, and basic living needs.  Travel within Puerto Rico is very limited due to washed out roads, downed power lines, downed trees and debris.  So, until someone can really get in there more deeply to show us on TV what is actually happening we are pretty much left to guess and depend on sporadic reports and first hand accounts.  Our “president” (I use the title loosely) isn’t doing a damned thing for Puerto Rico, period.  His words yesterday when asked about it were very demeaning to the country, saying they were in debt, and basically they were on their own.  He said they would get around to dealing with sending federal assistance “maybe mid-October”.  Do you believe that?  Puerto Rico is an American territory and has 3.5 million American citizens living there….and he doesn’t care!!!!

This is a link to PBS article about how you can directly help Puerto Rico.  It lists the main organizations helping.  I urge you to read this and act if you are able.  They really need our help.  If I can get healthy soon I am going to try to volunteer with VOAD if possible.  I’m sure it will be a few weeks before I am healed from the surgery that I need right now, but once that is done I plan to do more volunteering of my time with agencies like VOAD.

Ah, yes, surgery.  The MRI and x-rays that I had taken last week came back and the results were not good at all.  It seems that my neck and cervical spine area thinks that I am 85 not 55!  Because of degenerating discs, arthritis and a narrowing of the opening where the nerves go through my spinal cord and nerves are being constricted.  This is causing me to have pain and tingling and numbness in both arms and hands.  I also am having bad shoulder pain, be until I see the doctor on Thursday to set up the surgery I won’t know if that is part of the nerves being constricted or not.  I’m hopeful that surgery by a specialist will help to fix the problem and eliminate this pain and discomfort.  I am also hoping that the procedure won’t disable me completely for too long.  I hate laying in bed and doing nothing.  I know there will be a recovery time, but I’m hoping it will be as short as possible.  It’s a bitch getting old.  Haha…no seriously, it is!!!

The weather here in Maine right now is as hot as southern Florida.  It’s been in the low 90’s the last 3 days…and we got 2 more to go the weather person says!  I’ve been keeping things cool with the help of my overhead fan in the living room and fans in each bedroom.  That along with keeping the shades half drawn has kept most of the heat outside.  I should mow my lawn – one more time – but it’s just too hot.  Maybe tonight after 6pm it will cool down and I can get it done.  Only takes me about 30-45 minutes to mow it all.  And it only requires me to steer and walk behind it.  I have a self-propelled mower, so it’s easy to mow.  I thought my last mow was going to do it for the season, but then we got a bunch of rain just before all of this sunshine and high temps, so the grass took to growing again, nice and lush green!

I have made my website public.  I’ve been working on a basic site with GoDaddy.  It’s not finished by any means, but it’s up and live at: http://www.butchperspectives.godaddysites.com if you would like to check it out.  I have a more “grand plan” for it in the long run, but right now I am just working on getting a working site up and running.  You can sign up on the site for updates, etc. if you wish.  And I appreciate any feedback you would like to offer up!  I’m always looking for new ideas, new products, and fun stuff to do, so please if you have suggestions let me know! Eventually the site will become a dot com site, but for now I am leaving it associated with GoDaddy for convenience in editing.

It’s early afternoon here now and I need to go do those errands I mentioned earlier.  Thanks for stopping by to read me and also Thank YOU for being a subscriber and reader of my blogs!  I truly appreciate every single one of you!!!

What would you like to see me write about?

~Peace~   ~MB

 

 

 

 

 

Taking a Knee During a National Anthem

American Flag

Colin Kapaernick chose to take a knee during the playing of the national anthem at an NFL football game, it has cause huge uproar and much discussion in this country about patriotism, racism and loyalty.

Today, September 24, 2017, the whole country tuned in to watch and see what all of the players were going to do today at the NFL games.  Who would take a knee, and who would support them.  Yesterday Trump lashed out at the NFL, at Kapaernick and anyone else he could think of.  He called them “sons of bitches” and called for the NFL to “fire them” for their protest.  Trump seems to be more concerned with football than he is with running this country.  Obviously he has no idea what the fuck he is actually supposed to be doing in Washington DC.

I served my country in the US Army for 6 years so that people like Colin would have freedom.  I do not see his taking a knee in protest of disproportionate killings of black men by law enforcement, with no justice when it’s due, as being disrespectful to the flag.  I see it as him protesting something he truly believes is wrong with his country.  It’s his right to express himself.  And those players who choose to suppor thim by standing with their arms linked have every right to do just that – support him, and make their voices heard as well.

The United States is in such incredible turmoil right now. In my 55+ years I have never seen anything like what is happening all around me right now.  I fear that things are brewing to become very volatile in the near future.  There is so much talk of race and racism, and I’m hearing it from so many places.  Blacks aren’t happy with whites, whites aren’t happy with blacks, Hispanics feel like they are being thrown out of the country, Asians also fear deportation and violence.  It’s crazy, it’s sad, and it’s scary.  And our “president” Trump is leading the charge to make it as bad as possible for everyone.  He particularly likes to strike out with his hatred of black athletes and Hollywood stars, with his hatred for immigrants pulling a close second.

Just because you do not agree with someone else’s opinion doesn’t mean that you should deny them their freedom of speech.  Freedom means that everyone does not have to have the same thoughts, feelings, opinion, or methods of expressing themselves; it means that we have the right to be individuals and are free to express ourselves as such.

I personally choose to stand for my national anthem.  That is MY choice.  I also choose to support those who make other choices.  As long as one is not desecrating the flag by shitting on it, burning it, altering it in anyway – like putting swastikas on it – and being generally purposefully nasty and outwardly disrespectful to the flag and my country, I am tolerant of civil protest and personal expression.  I do not see Colin Kapaernick’s kneeling as protesting the flag, I see it as it is…his protesting the lack of equal treatment and equal justice in this country.

This video shows both what Trump said, and what Obama’s response to this is…well worth watching.

 

I am proud to be an American.  I am proud of my flag, and what it stands for, and I am thankful to all who have served and who have fallen protecting our freedom.  I am also proud to support peaceful protest and tolerance of other’s opinions.  I stand with Colin Kapaernick and support his right to kneel and his personal reason behind it.

What do you think?  Do you have an opinion of this?

Peace.  ~MB

Just WHY???

I can’t wrap my mind around WHY anyone would support or try to defend the words, actions, inactions, lack of words, absurd behavior, rudeness, lack of tolerance, and blatant lies of Donald J Trump, our supposed “President” of these United States of America. I just am completely baffled by anyone who promotes this man and his hate-filled agenda. I see it occasionally from some people that I know on Facebook, and it just makes me cock my head in awe, and it makes me want to ask them directly “Do you NOT understand anything? Are you so blinded by his lies and deceitful tactics that you are willing – that you CHOOSE -to follow him like a stupid little, lost sheep? Would you jump off a bridge if he told you this was necessary for him to remain your president? Some of you would, I just know you would.”

No one likes Trump or his crew of evil doers. He is so concerned with “party” and not with “people” and it’s so very easy to SEE exactly where his loyalties and priorities lay – with the richest and his most wealthy donors. He has absolutely NO concern for the citizens of this country, or for the well-being of any part of this world – unless it directly correlates to his bank accounts. WHY is this so difficult for some people to see and understand? Do they seriously “believe” that Trump cares about them in some way??? Because, believe me – and all of the millions of others who see, understand and truly get it – he doesn’t give two shits about YOU or about “making America great again”…that’s not even HIS slogan, that was stolen from Ronald Reagan!!! Reagan is the one who used the “make America great again” in his campaign. Trump is nothing short of a total copy-cat. Anything he sees or hears that he can use, he uses. He has NO IDEAS of HIS OWN. It’s all just complete nonsense in his head!

Trump instigates Kim Jong Un, leader of North Korea, basically egging him on to do something that will give Trump the necessary reason to obliterate North Korea. Trump verbally threatened to “completely destroy North Korea” and I believe he fully intends to do just that because he thinks it will make him look “fabulous” and make more stupid people love his old ass.
Trump himself knows nothing about war or military service. He was a draft dodger, 3 times even! He didn’t have the fortitude, patriotism or guts to fight for or serve his country in the military. He only knows what he has watched on TV or in the movies, and he thinks it’s all glorious. He doesn’t consider the affect that a war of nuclear missiles will kill MILLIONS of innocent people – not just Kim Jong Un!

If Trump had ANY sense he would order a strategic removal of Jong Un…Obama did it to Osama Bin Laden, so we KNOW it is possible. But Trump can’t seem to do it with his buddy the “Rocket Man” as he calls Jong Un nowadays. Another “stolen” nickname originally given to Jong Un’s father by Newsweek magazine years ago. He’s just re-using other people’s words to make himself look good in some weird way. Like it’s very grown up and very “presidential” to call the leaders of other countries vile nicknames and speak of them in derogatory terms, yeah must make him feel REAL GOOD about himself.

Trump tries daily to convince his dead-brained followers that he has nothing to do with Russia. He claims Russia had nothing to do with our recent presidential election process. Yet, 16 security agencies of the US Government have VERIFIED this as a FACT. Trump does not even have confidence enough to believe his own security advisors. And THEY verified that Russia did INDEED interfere with our presidential election process. Whether this had any effect on the outcome is vaguely debatable, but it DID happen nonetheless. And how can you not believe all of the people who tirelessly work in our intelligence and security agencies who say this is a fact? All of them say it is so, and ONE man says it is not…and some people believe that one man? WHY??? I just don’t get it. It does not make sense.

And the new attempt by Trump to have Obama’s name removed from our healthcare is abominable. This “Graham-Cassidy” bill is the WORST suggested bill to date! All 50 state Medicare director has come out against it, the AMA is against it, doctors, insurance companies and most every health-related institution is against this bill. It is so horrendous that even some senators say they would not vote for the bill, except that they must because if they don’t they will lose the $$$ they get from their “donors” who are the ONLY ones who benefit in the form of the largest tax break for them in history if this bill passes. It is a very shameful thing when our elected officials choose “party” over “people”…just completely shameful. IF Trump is so fucking worried about Obama’s name being on the American’s Care Act (ACA) then just change it to Trump care and be DONE with attacking it and causing 30 MILLION people to worry about losing all practical healthcare and protections. IF they repeal the ACA as it stands the only ones who will be happy with the end result of a very, very poor standard of care for America will be it’s very wealthiest citizens, and no one else. Ordinary American’s WILL suffer and suffer very greatly.

Donald Trump is completely delusional. He is so focused on Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama that he can’t see anything else past his nose. He is SO envious of those two that it’s pathetic. He can’t get over the FACT that Hillary Clinton garnered MORE POPULAR votes than he did! FACT!!! He can’t get by the FACT that Obama did more in his 8 years than Trump could even THINK of doing in his however-many years…let’s hope it’s a VERY SHORT number of years!!!

IF you believe Donald Trump, he is the ONLY one telling the truth here in America. He claims that EVERYONE else – every media source, including Facebook, and every government organization – is telling lies about him and promoting “fake news” as he so readily calls EVERYTHING he disagrees with now. The man just can’t get over himself! He’s a blatant LIAR, yet a few very naive people seem to want to fall for his lines. I am very sorry for those people; they will surely be very disappointed when Trump goes down in flames. And it IS going to happen – in one way or another!

There are SO MANY fucked up things going on here with Trump and his family and his cohorts that I can’t even scratch the surface. From the RNC funding the Trump family’s legal fees to Price taking government planes to watch the eclipse…it’s all so corrupt and illegal that it stinks to high heaven! And so many other things too! But, I shall leave you here with these paragraphs to ponder about what is going on with Trump and America right now.

Peace. ~MB

PS…as I was writing this Trump sent US fighter jets over the airspace of North Korea…now we wait for North Korea’s response – or World War Three – not quite sure just yet!

Some Photos to Share…

The last couple of weeks in pictures. From the top…a segment of the new Sarah Long drawbridge that is being built to replace the old one, on US Route 1 in Kittery going to Portsmouth.  These segments will help put the span in place, which is supposed to happen at high tide on Oct. 17th and I WILL be there – night or day – to see it happen!  I can’t wait to take photos of the event.  The tractors hauling the segments had to come through my weigh station this week on their way over to the bridge construction site, which is close to my work.

Other photos…me being silly with the crown..yeah, I am king Butch! Ha!

The foot shot is my visit to the dentist yesterday to get a broken tooth repaired.  The dentist had a helluva time numbing my mouth, the novocaine just wouldn’t take and he had to keep adding more…finally the whole left side of my face was numb and he got it done.  My teeth are almost all completely fixed now, which is just awesome!  Come a long way since April!

I bathed the dogs and took that pic of them scowling at me from the back of the couch…where they perched to dry off.  They cooperate quite well for their baths, but if they know it’s coming they do both try to run and hide.  Once they’re caught they give in and let me bathe them without much incident.  Now cutting their nails is a whole other animal!  They HATE it and fight like crazy!

I got the pic of the bee on the cone flower when I was over at Lowe’s looking at plants.  I thought it was a great shot to take!  The bees are so endangered right now, we need to keep a vigilant eye on what is happening to them because without bees we don’t get the pollination we need for growing food…think about that.

I got those snazzy new boxers recently, I usually wear boxer briefs, but these caught my eye.  They’re quite comfortable to run around the house in, but I can’t wear them under clothing as underwear.  I’m stuck on the boxer-briefs for that purpose.  I did get a new pair of the Ellen underwear…which I am not that happy with.  They are too thin, the waist band needs to be wider by about 3/4″ and they need to be about 2″ longer in the leg….she touts them as the greatest thing since sliced bread…but I beg to differ.  They could use much improvement.  I am still very happy with the Aeropostale brand, they’re the best I have found!

The sunflowers are from my mothers garden.  I can’t believe how tall they all got!  Those are at least 12′ tall!  I’ve got to try to put in a patch of sunflowers of my own next year.

And yes, I am still smoking my beloved cigars on occasion….I prefer the Black & Mild Cream ones the most!

Have a great weekend!!! More photos and some videos to come!

Peace!  ~MB

 

Week’s Update Blog / Sept. 22, 2017

Tuesday, September 19, 2017…wow, this year is going by very fast for me!  It feels like May was just last week, yet here we are entering Autumn and the leaves are beginning to change colors, mornings are crisp and cool, and you can feel the change of seasons in the air.  I love this time of year.  I love everything about the Fall season; from pumpkins to raking leaves in late Fall…it’s just a super enjoyable time of year – although I am not a huge fan of the leave raking task, I do manage to get it done when it’s time.

I got a ton of things done around my house this last weekend.  I did a really deep cleaning of the interior of the house, right down to washing comforters and pillows.  I’m getting ready for the winter and want to have everything organized and in place in preparation for the cold and snow.  I got the grass mowed for what I hope is the last time this season. It has slowed in growing quite a bit, so I doubt that it will need to be mowed again this year, but hey, I could be wrong!  I still need to trim my forcynthia bushes and do another coat of paint on the front porch railings and spindles. And I still need to get the back porch painted.  There’s just always something that needs attention around here, I guess it’s all a part of having a home and caring for it properly.  I like to keep things updated, in good shape, and looking nice, so I put in the extra effort to get it all done. Â

Friday: September 22, 2017 — While I’ve been feeling really great lately mentally and my immune system health is excellent, I am still dealing with a good amount of pain in my neck and cervical spine area that radiates down both arms and affects my hands.  Last week I had one day that I couldn’t keep a grip on things, and I dropped my favorite coffee cup and smashed it to smithereens.  It’s got something to do with the nerves and some disc issues in my neck that is causing the pain, tingling, and weakness in my arms and hands.  I recently had an x-ray and an MRI done on the neck/c-spine area and am awaiting the doctor’s advice and suggestions as to what we can do to help with it.  I may be facing a possible surgery to repair the degenerated discs…I am not sure yet exactly what is going to be done.  Something has to happen because I don’t want this to get any worse, or to lose the use of my hands.

The kidney issue is still also up in the air.  I’ve undergone some extensive testing, and do not know the results yet.  I have a cyst of some sort on my left kidney, and it’s showing signs of disease, but we are not sure how bad it is, or if it’s even bad at all.  I’m not real worried about it, I’m in no pain from it and had it not been for an abnormal blood work result I wouldn’t even know there was a problem at all.

So, while I have a couple of challenges health-wise, I do feel really good about things overall.  I haven’t felt very much up to using the computer the last 10 days or so, it hurts to be on it and typing for too long. This has caused me to get behind in my emails and in replying to people.  I just hope everyone will understand that I cannot always get right back to them when I am feeling like this.  I do occasionally use my phone to check email, which I did earlier this week – to find that one friend was quite angry with me for not replying to her email from the 15th.  I tried to tell her I wasn’t feeling up to even opening up my laptop, but she can be a bit extreme when it comes to being mad at me for little things like not replying to her fast enough for her tastes.  I’m wicked sorry about it, but not much I can do.

My girlfriend’s internet is down for repairs at this time.  She and I haven’t been able to really communicate for over a week.  That bums me out because I am very used to connecting with her every day at some point, but until they finish replacing the internet lines in her town they are all without cable and internet.  It’s supposed to be completed by next Thursday.  I’ll be happy when she can be back online and we can Skype once again.  I really miss talking to her and seeing her on Skype.  It’s also like this when she is out of town on business travel too.  But we have learned to cope with it alrigh
I am in quite a lot of pain in my right collarbone and right shoulder and arm tonight.  So I cannot continue typing for very long, and I have to keep resting every paragraph or so because it hurts so damned much!  I have taken Aleve, a prescription Celebrex pain reliever, as well as applied a 4% lidocaine gel to the areas to help relieve some of the pain.  I have upcoming appointments to have the nerves tested in my c-spine and arms, and am preparing to most likely have some disc surgery on my neck and c-spine.  I’m not sure what all that will entail at this point as the doctor has just started discussing it with me and we are going to do further testing to try to really pinpoint the problem.

I have to go respond to some personal emails tonight and beg forgiveness for my tardiness in doing so.  Tomorrow I am going to TRY to paint the kitchen cabinets that I installed this last Spring as well as get to the rest of the outside painting that needs to be finished up.  This will obviously all depend on how high my pain level is and if I am physically up to doing it in the morning!  Let’s hope so!

I am watching the world news very closely lately.  As I am sure most of you are too.  I am not going into my thoughts on what is going on here, it’s just too frustrating for me to deal with right now.  I fear we have entered the twilight zone in some ways.  It all seems so surreal sometimes.

Hope you all are doing well.  So, tell me, what is your #1 concern about world affairs right now?  What are you doing to deal with it?

Peace.  ~~MB

Ten Months…

Today I had my Groups: Recover Together meeting.  It’s basically weekly group therapy for opioid addicts trying to get clean, and in recovery.  I have been going to Groups now for over 6 months, and today got my 6 month token.  Its’ just a little pocket coin to fiddle with and remind yourself that you are in recovery and yes, you can do this!

2017-09-13 19.46.10I’m pretty proud that I have managed to kick my opioid addiction and stay clean for almost 10 months now.  Oct. 28th will be my 1 year anniversary.  It hasn’t been easy, I’ve had some really tough days and brutal nights.  I am currently in the Suboxone program. Suboxone is a drug used to curb the cravings and block the effect of opioids.  Basically, as long as I take my daily sublingual strips, which are paper strip that I put under my tongue and let dissolve for 7 minutes without swallowing — yeah, TRY to go 7 whole minutes without swallowing, it’s a real trick!  Anyway, as long as I take those I don’t have the hellish cravings for the drug, and even if I did do any dope it would be “blocked” by the Naloxone in the Suboxone strip.  Rendering doing it absolutely useless…I wouldn’t get high, so why bother?  It’s a phychological thing as well as a physical thing I believe.

Going to the weekly group meeting, where I am in a room with 8-10 other addicts all in the same boat, and all doing the same basic thing – trying to eliminate addiction from their lives.  We have developed a pretty tightly knit group at this point.  We’ve come to hold one another’s feet to the fire.  When you arrive at the office for the meeting you have to take a piss test, and they test it on the spot for any drugs.  It’s a 6 way test.  As long as you don’t test for any drugs except for the Suboxone (buprenorphine) you are good to go.  You go into the group meeting and when you are finished you pick up your weekly prescription from the coordinator on the way out.  You can test positive for marijuana also, it’s legal here so they don’t dock you for having it in your system.  Plus, many of us use it for pain relief, which is why many of us started using the opioid drugs to begin with.  Marijuana isn’t considered to be a problem in this program, and I don’t believe it’s a problem drug if used smartly.  If you test positive for any other drug you are pulled aside and have to meet with the counsellor before you can pick up your script.  You have to explain why you are positive and generally they will give you a break and a chance to continue.  If you habitually test positive, or have a “dirty” or “hot” result you can be tossed out of the program.  And no one wants that!  Going to these meetings in order to get your prescription, being tested weekly, and bein accountable has become pretty damned important to me.  I need the Subs, so I follow the program and it’s kept me on track very well.

The opioid crisis is a nationwide crisis affecting all communities regardless of age, race, gender, religion, social status, or wealth.  It doesn’t discriminate.  I know many very prominent people in my community that hide secret addictions to these powerful drugs such as Percocet, oxycodone, Vicodin, Heroin and Fentanyl.  Once the drug gets you hooked you are in a fight for your life.  Too many times I have seen that fight end in death.  I didn’t want to be another one of those statistics.  Maine has an unusually high number of addicts, and a very high over-dose rate.  It’s a rural state, and for some reason has become a very big state for the trafficking of these potent drugs.

Tonight on ABC television here in the US there is a show that’s going to be on that’s called “State of Addiction” which will talk all about the epidemic we are facing here.  I plan to watch it and have encouraged my family and loved ones to do the same.  I can tell them things, but I think that hearing them from people who combat this every day will be even better for them to understand.  I am very lucky to have a very good support network of family, friends and a very supportive and loving girlfriend.  Without them I don’t think I would have made it back to sobriety….I thank every single one of them, and especially my dear Mother who I put through hell and back with worry and angst.  I’m sorry for all of it, but an addict doesn’t see those things or the way they are affecting people around them when they are actively using.  It’s not til one gets clean that we can look back and realize the damage we have done, and just hope and try to fix it somehow.

Peace.  ~MB

 

Solemn Memories of September 11, 2001

2017-09-11 13.41.52Today is Monday – September 11, 2017….the 16th anniversary of the bombing of the 9/11 attacks on America…US flags will be flown at half-staff today in remembrance.

I worked a few hours this morning and am home now…and I am remembering exactly where I was 16 years ago today when the first plane hit the Twin Towers in NYC…I was building a barn, and was standing up on the floor of the 2nd story or loft area, readying to put up the roof rafters.  Time seemed to stand endlessly still.  Then the second plane hit.  By this time I was in the house in front of the television watching it live…and I was crying.  All of those innocent people, on the plane, in the buildings…and then we hear that another plane has hit the Pentagon…more death and destruction…then the field in Pennsylvania…carnage.  Then the Twin Towers fell…this was hell.

I will never forget that day.  Or the weeks that followed as we tried to wrap our minds around what had happened, and why it had happened.  It was the our baptism by fire into the world of terrorism.  Pretty much up until 9/11/01 the citizens of the USA lived in a sort of world where we almost thought we were untouchable by outside forces.  We believed that “it would never happen here” in our own backyard.   No one would dare attack the United States directly….then it happened on September 11, 2001.  That very day our whole world changed; flipped completely upside down and would never be the same again.

For days I was glued to the television watching the live news casts for hours on end.  I couldn’t sleep, no one could.  People were missing.  People were severely injured.   And eventually we would learn that almost 3,000 were dead.  We were all devastated, as posters and notes to the missing were being tacked up all over NYC.  Families searched for loved ones, and some found them unharmed, some never heard from them again.  We heard about those trapped in the towers calling loved ones to say good-bye on their cellphones…unbelievably sad.

9/11/01 was a day that changed me.  It changed America.  It changed all of us.  We were not invincible.  We had been attacked; savagely attacked and cut to the core.  Everyone knew someone who was lost in the attacks, or knew of someone who was directly affected.  It’s an amazing thing, the way we are all so intertwined.  It’s the phenomenon that we are all connected within 6 degrees….or the 6 degrees of separation theory.  I’ve found it to be quite true in most instances.

Because of the attacks on 9/11/01 I have far more consciousness of living life in the moment, not passing up chances to learn new things, meet and know new people, and not to take it for granted that there will be a tomorrow.  I, like many, developed a deep rooted sense of prejudice against Muslims; one which I have worked hard to get over and change.  I admit it, at that time I blamed radical Islamic teachings and those who were part of that faith for the attacks.  Now, I know that it is a small percentage of Muslims that hate America and wish to attack us because of this hate.  I have worked to overcome my misguided prejudices, and to understand better.  I now have friends who are Muslim, and even a cousin who married a Muslim man and converted to his faith.  I no longer blame them all, but those 7 terrorists that carried out those senseless attacks on 9/11/01…I hope they are rotting in extreme hell.  And as we know, their leader Osam Bin Laden is DEAD, and hopefully he’s rotting in hell as well.

So, today, 9/11/17, I stop to remember, because we can NEVER FORGET that fated day in 2001, when the world stopped, and we all changed.  We must NEVER FORGET.

Peace.  ~  MB