So here goes 11 random things I have learned since September 11, 2001. Some serious and some not.

  1. My dad was right when he said not to make any major changes in my life until after the first year. Good advice. The first year we were numb and on autopilot.
  2. Even after the darkness night, the sun will rise the next morning.
  3. Life is meant to be lived one day at a time. And sometimes it is meant to be lived the next ten minutes and then the ten minutes after that.
  4. Everyone has a story. And I can’t know what someone has been through by looking at them.
  5. Listening is the greatest gift you can give someone.
  6. There are some things that can only be understood by another FDNY widow. And I am very grateful for the FDNY widow friends in my life.
  7. When visiting the White House, don’t wander down a path unless you have been given permission. You may run into sniper people.
  8. David Hasselhoff is taller than he looks on TV, Glenn Close is very tiny and “Ginger” from Gilligan’s Island is way too skinny. Met all of them at the Squad 41 Christmas party in December of 2001.
  9. I have to make  decisions that are right for me and my family.  And until you have walked in my shoes please don’t judge me. I will respect your choices even if you don’t respect mine.
  10.  Squad 41 thinks I have “culture”. In March of 2002, there was a trip donated by the Paris Fire Department to spend a week in France and Squad 41 said they thought of me because I have “culture’. 🙂
  11. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Photo is of the flag that covered Bruce’s body when his remains were found in March 2002. The medal is the Congressional Medal of Valor which was awarded to all first responders who died in the line of duty on September 11, 2001. We were invited to the White House in September of 2005. Not inside just on the lawn. Still trying to get an invitation inside.

“In three words I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it goes on.” -Robert Frost