I had every intention today of blogging about the last trip that Greg and I took together sans children. It was a short, but totally awesome trip to Old San Juan, Puerto Rico. I’ve been thinking about that trip a lot lately because a) I have a twitter acquaintance who is heading to Puerto Rico in a couple of weeks, b) it came up in a conversation I had with a couple of my good girlfriends the other day, and c) gosh, Greg and I could really use a trip like that now.
But when I sat down in front of the computer this morning to write, the words just wouldn’t come. Thoughts of those who were tragically killed in, as well as those who miraculously survived, the bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah federal building in Oklahoma City fifteen years ago flooded my brain. And suddenly, what I had to say didn’t seem at all important.
I was on the treadmill at the gym this morning watching news coverage of the memorial event going on in Oklahoma City and I stopped and stood in silence, as they did, for 168 seconds representing the number of victims of the bombing. Stirred by the ceremony, I began to recall that day and exactly where I was and what I was doing when I heard about it.
I was in my first year of law school at the University of Tulsa. I had finished my first class of the day and was walking with some friends over to the student center to grab something to eat before my next class began. We passed another of our classmates who told us there had been a bombing in Oklahoma City. We walked more briskly and once inside, gathered with others around the televisions in the student center to find out what happened and watch the live reports as they came in. In complete disbelief, I was only able to watch for about ten minutes before I had to head back over for my next class.
I recall sitting in class then (if memory serves, it was Contracts) and just trying really hard to concentrate on what the professor was saying. What case(s) or legal principle(s) we were discussing. And wondering how in the world we could be sitting in a class, analyzing the law, going on with our lives when people, kids even, were hurting and dying. It was impossible for me to focus on anything other than what was happening in the same state, a mere hour and a half car ride from where I was.
I was scared. I was confused. I was empty and terribly sad.
I hope that at some point today you, too, stopped to remember.