I am a Sweetheart to One and a Mommy to Four Loveable Babes, one of which is smiling down on us from Heaven. I am learning to dance in the rain. Come with me on my journey as I make the most out of Life's mud puddles.

Put on your rain boots. Great adventure lies ahead.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

A Day of Contrasts

Ten years ago today, America experienced a tragedy that took too many of its own.
Ten years ago today, I married my best friend.

Ten years ago, the world stood around televisions, staring wide-eyed, not believing the tragedy that was unfolding before them while I waiting in the Bride's room in the Salt Lake Temple, waiting to hear if they would keep the Temple open for our wedding.

Ten years ago, nearly 3,000 lives tragically ended.
Ten years ago, our family's life had just begun.

When we were married, the clergy that married us (called a "Sealer" in our faith) referred to the day as "a day of contrasts." He reminded us that - in the future - when we experience turmoil, loss, stress or tragedy, we could should return to the promises made that day and remember where we can turn to receive true peace.

And, oh, have we experienced those kinds of days.

But this year I feel the loss differently. I ache in a whole different way with these families because I too have experienced a bone-chilling loss. I HAVE become "well acquainted with grief" and I know what it's like to have your life change in an instant. To have the wind literally knocked out of you and have to literally labor through every breath.

The good news? There is Hope. There is Goodness. There is Light. And there is Joy. Though there will be moments of Darkness and - at times - they can feel suffocating. But the Morning will come. It will. The Sun will continue to rise and it will continue to warm, nourish and feed your soul. Will things ever be "normal"? No. But that can be a good thing. You are changed forever. Heaven is in your Home because part of your Home is in Heaven. And that is a very lovely thing.

In a 1864 letter to a Mrs. Bixby, a Mother who lost 5 of her sons in the Civil War, Abraham Lincoln penned these words:
"I pray that our Heavenly Father may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, and leave you only the cherished memory of the loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of freedom."

May I add my prayers to that of that wonderful, inspired man. May our prayers penetrate the Heavens in behalf of all the heartbroken and those looking for hope.

It will come. It will come.


  1. "Heaven is in your home because part of your home is in Heaven." I love that! So beautiful. What a day for you and yours. Happy Anniversary!

  2. I so love your words and the words and music of the Tabernacle Broadcast yesterday! They bring peace and love back to a crazy world! Thank you!

  3. Thought of you guys yesterday - wishing you a Happy Anniversary. May this year fill you with peace.

  4. What a beautiful post. Happy Anniversary! Definitely something to celebrate--ten years!! I watched the tabernacle choir broadcast yesterday and bawled. Thanks for tying it all together so beautifully with your thoughts!
    Much love--Jenny B.

  5. So many lessons to be learned from the tragedy of 9-11... faith, unity, being grateful for our blessings, and never taking things for granted, to name a few. I am learning these same lessons all over again by watching the way you and your family are handling this deep and personal tragedy in your lives. It reminds me of a little piece of advice my David and I received from one of my favorite BYU professors (George Durrant) when we got married. In his classically simple-yet-profound style, he said, "If you just keep holding hands, everything will be okay." You two are doing just that -- holding to each other, holding to the Lord, and holding to the covenants you made together in the temple 10 years ago. Because of this, everything WILL be okay.

    Thank you for so openly sharing your most tender feelings and thoughts here, thereby allowing us all to learn and re-learn some very precious lessons. You are dear people and we love you.

  6. WOW! Married on September 11th, what an experience, and a wonderful thing to contrast and commemorate with that day. I can't imagine your pain and loss, but thank you for sharing your feelings. You touch and bless many.

  7. Just read this post, wow Amanda you inspire with the words you "pen". Thank you for sharing your gift and more than words it is the depth and inspiration, the faith and courage, your perspective and wisdom. I love that quote from Abraham Lincoln and I love that you have part of heaven in your home. May heaven ever be near and lift you as you lift and help so many others heal and find comfort. Bless you dear friend. <3

  8. Amanda,
    You have always impressed me beyond words. I think I've told you before, but I remember sitting up in your room in Main Hall (4th floor?) having a chat with you one lovely, humid summer's afternoon at SVC. You told me all about your travels to the Middle East and I thought you were one of the most solid, admirable, wonderful people I'd met. That holds true to this day, even more so now than ever. I'm so honored to know you.
    On 9/11 I was still at SVU and I remember hearing that it was your Wedding day. Every year on 9/11, I think of the attacks and I also remember you & David and am reminded that despite the chaos of that day there were also beautiful, good things that happened. Thank you for sharing your day of contrasts with us. I love you, friend. :)


Thank you for being a part of my journey. I appreciate your supportive and healing comments. Here's to a Promise of Sunshine!