September 11th was a painful tragedy for the American people, yet our response showed the true strength of our nation.
As we recognize the 17th anniversary of these attacks, I am reminded of the personal losses I suffered that day, as well as the heroic stories of so many. I think about the journey of grief and healing.
I think about resilience.
Project Rebirth defines resilience as “the process of adapting well in the face of adversity, trauma, tragedy, threats or significant sources of stress.”
America certainly adapted well in the face of tragedy following September 11th. We came together after that terrible day to share our grief, to rebuild, and to heal.
We found a way to move forward after an unthinkable act of violence.
Yet, each year our society becomes more disassociated from the attacks. We now have an entire generation with no first-hand account of them.
That makes me wonder about the results of resilience.
Perhaps it’s inevitable that our process of adapting pushes us forward to a time when 9/11 will be a distant memory. Yet we must continue to look back as well. To become indifferent is not only a disservice to the victims and their families, but to ourselves and future generations as well.
For it is our memories that give us history, and our history that gives us meaning.
May we never forget.
Telos CEO John Wood blogs about business, education, and the values that guide us.