Monday, September 12, 2011

On Getting on with Life

I've written repeatedly about mercy, about forgiveness about the capacity of the human heart.
On September 11, 2001, Jeremy Glick was on Flight 93, the plane that was crashed in Pennsylvania, the one where the passengers rushed the terrorist hijackers.  Before they did that, before they took the vote and decided to do that, he called home.  To find out if what he'd heard about the other planes was true.  And to tell his wife that he loved her.
I think to anyone who lost a loved one on Sept. 11, even 10 years later it’s still there. You turn on the news — I could be on the treadmill at the gym — and I see Sept. 11, I see Flight 93 and the field where my husband crashed, and emotions just overcome you. It’s not something you think you’ve put away. It comes back at times you don’t expect it.
That's Jeremy's wife, Lyzbeth Glick Best, talking to Paul Moakley and quoted in a special edition of Time.  And it's so honest and so clearly evident when you read or hear it, that it's hard to imagine anything else.  And it's deeply moving in its plain-spoken ordinariness.
One lives with pain. It's never far away.  There is no closure.
But there is this, what she said next.
I’m a very peaceful person. I don’t even agree with war. I don’t believe in the death penalty. But that’s my personal belief. I know many families do want more of a revenge. For me, I think judgment comes in another life from here. I do have some anger, but I really, over 10 years, have tried to let it go. My life now — it’s very joyous. I don’t think you ever get over the loss or the pain. Just the other day I’m thinking, “He’s really not coming back this time,” or not in this lifetime, and 10 years later, that’s still difficult for me to accept. But that doesn’t mean I haven’t found joy in my life. I think somewhere along the way I’ve learned to separate the pain from joy. I’m remarried to a wonderful man, and we have two beautiful children in addition to my older daughter. He has adopted my older daughter, so he’s been a father to her since she was 4 years old. Life has moved forward. I teach college. I’ve had that job for almost 15 years. And my family is what’s important to me.
Because life goes on.  And Ms. Glick Best gets that too.
No closure.  But joy.  Amid the pain.  But also, and of course this is really what gets to me, no desire for vengeance.
I do have some anger, but I really, over 10 years, have tried to let it go.
Perhaps not forgiveness.  Really, that's about unimagineable.  But working on letting the anger go.
Which is working on healing.
As I said, the capacity of the human heart.

Lyzbeth Glick Best
H/t Joachim

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