Obligatory 9/11 Post
What year is this? How old am I now? I always have to ask because sometimes I forget.
I don’t want to appear flippant or disrespectful. That, of course, is not my intention. I was a New Yorker, back on this inhuman day, 18 years ago. If my simple year math is accurate. I’ve discussed my experience on other bloggys in the past, and elsewhere. I’m not going to go into much detail here but I will say, for explanation’s sake that I was in lower Manhattan, working my first real job in my field, when the world changed. Luckily, I was not directly affected by the attacks. I have a friend or two who had family and friends who were killed. But six degrees of separation on this hallowed day are meaningless.
Me? Even though I had a front row seat to the smoke, I was probably affected no more or no less than every other American, ally, and free-loving citizen. My eyes well up just as yours do. We are all in this ghastly, heart wrenching memory together.
The point of this post is to express my confusion over a certain (for lack of a better word) event that is happening today in my daughter’s and son’s shared preschool. They are 4 and 2 years old, respectively. And we parents were instructed to dress them in red, white, and blue, to commemorate that distant but ever-present Tuesday morning, literally a decade and a half before my eldest was even born.
So the plan, I guess, is to take a school picture with all the adorable children in their patriotic colors. To what end? Is it a miniature photo opp designed to show that resiliency exists in even the tiniest of people? What happens when the kids ask questions? Is there a lesson plan for 4 year olds that revolves around the Twin Towers? No, of course not.
I raised the question with my daughter’s teacher yesterday, briefly. I asked her what they intend to do in terms of discussion, if anything? I got a sort of half-answer that was akin to: “We’re just going to explain, if they ask why we’re wearing these colors, that we are proud Americans. And on this day a long time ago, some bad people tried to hurt us. But we’re strong. And we overcome.”
That is an incredibly broad paraphrasing of the answer I received. I don’t think it was even that thorough because how could it be? The bulk of her words were drowned out by my daughter’s exuberance over getting to go home and 12 or so other kids vying for Teacher’s attention. Such are the majority of conversations I have with adults these days, peppered by frantic youth’s ceaseless mouth noises.
I’m not going to get up on a soapbox here. I don’t think there’s a glaring disconnect or failure of duty on behalf of this extraordinary early education center. We send our kids there because they exceed in oh so many ways. Our babes are learning much in their youngest years and it’s my hope that they will be all the more prepared for grade school and beyond. But I find this one to be a bit of a head scratcher, is all. And though I’m sure this cutesy red, white, and blue tribute was born from nothing but good intentions, I have to wonder why my babies need to be subject to even a glimpse of the terror and horrible things the world has to offer.
I’m sure I’m reading way too much into it. Skye will come home tomorrow and ask me no questions about it. She’ll get lost in Blippi’s world and be as clueless and innocent as ever.
Maybe I’m just jealous of the ignorance of unimaginable things.
Hug your kids and keep them close.
Peace to you and yours.