You’ll always remember…

…where you were (mentally or physically) in that moment, no matter what it was that changed for you – that maybe you didn’t know the world as well as you thought, the loss of innocence in a place or a person, the guilt of not being there, or maybe even if you’re lucky, a happy turn of events – whether it’s devastating or uplifting news, you’ll always remember.

Of course, we all have happy and sad moments that stay with us, but these particular events I’m talking about, these are different. It’s not just the event or the place, but that feeling. We all have them. I think a pretty common one is 9/11. I also have the following day I found out my childhood friend Tori had committed suicide, the night I found out Joe Gibbs was coming back as the Redskins head coach, and 4/16. I know the ‘Skins thing is a bit ridiculous, but I’m just grateful I have a good event in there.

On 9/11 I had been in college for all of two weeks. I remember waking up and like any other morning, reading friends’ AIM Away Messages...everybody knows what happens next. The day after I found out about Tori was the first time I dealt with the fact that the world keeps on moving even when you think it shouldn’t. Not everybody knew, but it was unfathomable to me that time wasn’t standing still. I honestly didn’t get it.

The night I found out Joe Gibbs was coming back as head coach, I was visiting Adam Temple and Bmo’s apartment (at the time) in Fairfax. Becky Porter, possibly Amy Rowland, and maybe a couple other girls were there, I can’t exactly remember. But I remember sitting in the living room, and Adam comes rushing in from his room with this look of unbelievable excitement. It still makes me smile thinking about it. He made the announcement, enunciating each word like he was even trying to convince himself, and we all jumped up and ran into his room to scour the Internet for more information. It was a good night.

Two years ago today, it was a regular Monday at work. I had come home the day before from a weekend trip to Blacksburg. That weekend was absolutely perfect and everything a weekend at Tech usually is. I was a little sad to be back at work, but still in that happy place that only VT can produce. Then my coworker Alpha (who is a VT alum as well) sent me an email with a link to a CNN web site detailing the events as they knew them at that time. The day went from there. Then came weeks, and now, years.

I debated mentioning something about today's anniversary, because I don’t know where to draw the line between showing I remember and care, and showing I remember and care by letting it go. If that makes sense. But I got an email the other day that my VT Filebox (the website VT gives you as a student to hold files, pictures, etc) is being deleted next month, and I don’t know. Going through those pictures makes me feel like this is a day worth remembering through recollection and celebration of a place that will always be home.

Remembering the time Lesley wouldn’t let me into her room until I said 23 nice things about her. I had to list the 23 to a seemingly uninterested door before I was let in. Or the utter ridiculousness that was everything about my participation in PSE, but that did give me the gift of some very special people that have a solid hold on my heart. Or the palpable energy of every single football game.

Anyway, this is all a long way of saying I love Virginia Tech. I am now and always a Hokie.


ro! said...

great blog entry.

Maris said...

Great post - I just came across your blog and you seem to be a great writer!

Some things like this never leave you - I remember 9/11, even Oklahoma City (I was 10!). Thes events are so awful and tragic that it's hard to believe they'll one day be a part of history textbooks.