it strikes me as remarkable.

photo credit here // typography by me
i don't know. today felt... different. there was a certain scent lingering in the air, one that i couldn't quite put my finger on it. maybe it was the cold, maybe it was the warmth, or maybe it was something else entirely, but it made us all shiver.

this morning, i awoke when the sky started to stretch. donning an old swim tee and some sweatpants, i dragged my dad out of bed and he drove me to the gym. i'm going to the gym instead of swimming now, but that's a whole different story. suffice to say that i'm a lot happier. a lot happier. anyway, when i walked outside, i was immediately greeted by goosebumps spreading like wildfire on my shoulders. it was the first time in a long time that i wanted a jacket, but i didn't go get one. instead, i let myself stay chilly, relishing in the fact that i hadn't been burnt to a crisp.

when i got to the gym, the sun was rising out of the sea, somewhere, far away. the clouds were pink and orange and the sky was blue on the other side of the parking lot. that's something that's never ceased to amaze me: east and west. it's either darker or lighter on each side. like a whole different world. but that's a different story, too.

by the time i left the gym, the sun had come up, but the sky was still glazed in the hues of pink and orange and maybe a small dash of purple on the horizon. as i sat in the lobby waiting for daddy to come pick me up, i saw a small dot floating towards the sun. it was a hot air balloon. i silently squealed, because i hadn't seen one of those in a long time. the employees behind me talked about men who threatened to beat their wives in public, and there were a lot of long silences, so i just closed my ears off to them and played classical piano over and over in my head. daddy eventually came, looking ragged like a person who's withered up like a raisin after being in the swimming pool too long, and confessed he slept in before we drove on home. i told him about the hot air balloon, and it was getting closer to the sun every second, but when we left the parking lot, it was gone. just gone. i figured the trees were blocking it, and when we drove out into a clearing i expected to see it, but it wasn't there. i was disappointed, but everything has to continue on its journey eventually.

everything felt off for the rest of the day. well, it was normal, but that scent lingering in the air seemed to set everyone on edge. it was on the tip of their tongue, the cliff of their personality, but they never gave it off. like you're just dying to tell someone a secret but you feel loyal to the other friend? that's what it was like. maybe it was the flags flying half-mast at school today. i had to think twice before i realised what it was.

when i was browsing tumblr this afternoon, i came across a certain gif. i gasped and covered my mouth in awe, but not the sort of awe where you admire something, but the sort of awe when a tragedy occurs so...dissonant, so negative, that it leaves you stunned. it took me several hours, but somehow, it clicked. and the spoon was finally molded into its proper shape. 
it was there, you guys. it was there. the building was there, and then it was gone. in seconds. in tenths, hundredths, nanoseconds. it was gone. and i still can't fathom how it all happened. i can hardly remember the morning it happened. i can conjure up an image in my head but i don't know if it's the right one. but basically, it's just like the hot air balloon. it was there when i walked out of the lobby. and when we drove out of the parking lot, it was suddenly gone. just gone. and i couldn't find it again. maybe it never existed. but the point is, it just kind of strikes me as remarkable. as odd. as tragic. as evil. for something so innocent, so simple, to be stolen in seconds. like taking candy from a child or tearing an infant away from his mother's heartbeat. it's scary. and really, in remembering, after eleven years, i just want it all to be okay.
so i'm praying, you guys. because i don't want anything else to be stolen so quickly. 
or even at all. 
-extremely loud & incredibly close-


  1. Oh Jocee, that was beautiful. I tried to put to words what I was thinking about today, but it just didn't work. It kept coming out cliche, or off the point, or just jumbled in general. But this. This is basically what I was feeling put in to words perfectly.

  2. my gosh. that gif is stunning...in a scary, tragic kinda way. like you said. my poor sister, it's her birthday today (11th September). a birthday on 11th. no fun.

  3. beautifully written, jocee. today was definitely off for me, too... i still remember that morning eleven years ago, probably a little better than you do. i was watching it all happen, live on the news with my parents, and i was afraid that the 'terrorists' were going to fly their planes into my house.

    we really do need to be in continual prayer for our nation. xo

  4. this is so beautiful. your words, and this event...definitely jaw-dropping. x - Jianine

  5. amen Jocee. this is perfect.

  6. Oh how beautifully written.
    That gif is terrifying, and heartbreaking. Yet a reminder to us all..


  7. wow. this is beautiful and descriptive and sorrowful and beautiful all over again. thank you so much for posting.

  8. this is beautiful. I read it last night and again this morning and it is so terrible and awful and true.

  9. that gif is amazing... I wish I remembered more from that day.

  10. I don't really remember it either. It almost seems unreal. I can't even begin to imagine what those trapped people were thinking and feeling at the time. I agree with you in that I hope nothing like this ever happens again.

  11. Beautifully written.

    Gosh I felt like I was so young then to really grasp what was happening when I first heard about it. I was about to leave for class, it's so tragic but I'm so proud of our country who stood united and resilient.

  12. I remember sitting in front of the television that Tuesday morning with my heart in my throat and my nails digging into the carpet, eyes squinted shut. The sunshine that flooded into the huge picture window seemed mocking. The thought that that's what terror really is, a seven year old with her mouth hanging open, my thirty something year old parents, mom clutching the phone with years running down her face and my dad with a deep crease in his forehead and my little brothers playing innocently with their trucks, didn't hit me till years later. I remember scribbling about how I saw history happen on some nondescript lined paper. And it still shakes me. Thanks for sharing this.

    1. this shakes me so hard. literally in tears.


sometimes i do not understand why you guys like me so much, but the fact that you do (and that you keep coming around) makes me happier than you can even imagine.

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