The one that comes every year on Patriots Day.
The one that I get when I open Facebook or turn on the TV and see the images. It was the Kennedy assassination of my generation. The imagery that takes us instantaneously back to the moment where we stood and watched it happen. The moment we stood wide eyed and gasping for air as we realized everything would be different.
This year it's hitting me different. I'm thinking about my friends who are having to articulate the "what" and the "why" of that day to their kids. The friends I stood by as we watched that horrific day unravel together; college sophomores worried about our dads who worked in federal buildings and flew planes. Worried about our aunts on vacation in NY. Worried about tomorrow, and not the test we had to study for. Knowing that safety and security would never have the same meaning.
Many of my college friends kids started school this year. We've spent the last few weeks talking about back to school traditions, looking at first day pictures and hearing about transitioning to all day school. But today a new normal has unfurled. Some of their had to wear red, white, and blue on a day in September and hear about a new kind of hate for the first time. And now, those moms are sitting in carpool lines preparing themselves for a different kind of after school conversation. A conversation that will expedite the conversation of diversity, hatred, and understand.
While we will never know, may we never forget.
May we never forget the lives of heroes that day. Men and women who unselfishly gave their lives. Neighbors who loved because that was their default mode.
May we never forget the magnitude and hurt inflicted from hate and cowardice.
Love always wins.