11:53 AM

September 11

September 11th. Seven years ago I was lying in bed with my husband. The clock radio kicked on and the disc jockey was just announcing that they had received reports of a small plane crashing into the World Trade Center towers in New York.

My oldest boy, who was eleven at the time, came tearing into our room 30 seconds later. He was watching the television and they had broken into the programming. I remember thinking to myself, “they’re pretty stirred up for a small plane.” I switched on the television in the bedroom just in time to watch the second plane hit the towers. It was the end of innocence for the children in my household.

Everything good about the world ended for my kids that day. Their sense that all was well in the world and that they lived in a safe place was shattered. At the time, I worked on the 36th floor of the tallest building in Portland, Oregon. That morning, my children begged and pleaded with me to please not go to work. They were afraid that our area would be next.

The next day I was driving home with my oldest son from an appointment. The radio was on and the song “God Bless The USA” by Lee Greenwood started playing. My son and I started singing along, but halfway through the first chorus, he broke down with heaving sobs. When the song was done, I turned off the radio, I quit watching T.V., I was overwhelmed by the constant images and reminders. My son, once he regained his composure, looked at me and said. “When I am 18, I’m joining the military, and I’m going to do whatever I can to keep our people safe.”

Noble words for an 11 year old, but he was 7 years away from 18, and a lot could happen between now and then.

Two days ago my son received his orders from the United States Air Force. He leaves the 28th of October for basic training in San Antonio, Texas. After he completes Basic, he will start schooling to become an Explosive Ordinance Disposal specialist.

I know that from now until his military career ends, that he will be dropped into every hot zone that exists around the world. He’ll be the guy on the front, clearing the path, to keep our people safe.

4:01 PM

Blue Sunday

It's been a month since the world as I've known it, changed.

Now I sit at crossroads, not knowing which turn I'm ultimately going to take. I don't like the uncertainty, but truth be told I probably wouldn't like the answer to questions if I actually got them. So I wait.

I've tried hard to put one foot in front of the other, but today it's a little bit harder. It's probably a good thing tomorrow's Monday, it means I'm back to work and my day is filled with something to do. The weekend's are hard, it's hard to fill all the empty time up, even with torching. It makes me painfully aware that I don't have many friends and even fewer physically close by.

I start second guessing myself. Is there something wrong with me, is it all my fault? Maybe if I had tried harder, done something different. I just end up running circles around myself and I still don't have the answer to the questions.

10:48 AM

Sunshine Today

You've got to love a job that lets you work from home and really love it when they let you work from home on Fridays. I spend the majority of my week in cubeville, back in the corner of the building and there are absolutely no windows in my office area. I couldn't tell you the weather outside if my life depended on it. I could cheat and use the Internet to tell what it is supposedly doing, but that is as close as I get. I rarely go out at lunch so I don't get an opportunity to figure out what is going on then either.

On Fridays however I get to sit in my home office and watch the squirrels tease the dogs. It's a beautiful fall day, and I do mean fall, because the leaves have already started turning color. They are turning way early this year, almost three weeks early, which leads me to believe we're in for a cold winter. Today however, the sun is out and it's headed towards 80 degrees with a slight breeze.

I think for me, for the near future, things are leveling out a bit. The tears have stopped, I slept last night without sleeping pills for the first time in weeks. I started my battle against the weight this week and I'm doing o.k. in that department as well. I'm going to have a lot of time on my hands over the weekend, as both my boys are with their dad.

Which leaves me with no choice other than to fire up the torch, turn on the kiln, and melt some glass.

9:33 PM

Long Weekend

I just got home from a long weekend at my brother's. My youngest son and I went. We spent Saturday perusing the Saturday market, followed by watching the home town parade. Then we snuck home for an afternoon nap then headed back into town for the county fair and rodeo.

Sunday we got up early and drove to a lake for some fishing. We caught our limits and headed back home for another nap, followed by an evening barbecue and board games.

And today (Monday) found us headed back home. As I was driving home, I had a lot of time to think. It's a four hour drive and the youngest was plugged into his ipod, so there wasn't a lot of conversation. I grew up in the country, outside of a small town. It wasn't until I joined the military did I really get exposed to what a "city" really was. I was never really thrilled about living in town, but that is where my husband wanted to live. I tried several times to get him to move farther out, but without any luck.

I realized today while driving back that I still miss that small town feel and living in an area where the wildlife is more prominent than the cars. The closest I get to wildlife now is a squirrel with an occasional off track raccoon. I miss neighbors that drop by to see how you're doing and to just shoot the breeze. It would be nice to have a few acres to plant fruit trees on and entertain the thought of having a couple of goats or cow or two.

Maybe I'm just being nostalgic for my youth when I felt safe and loved. Or maybe the reality is that I've gotten away from roots and perhaps I'm trying to find my way back.