Updated: Sep 12
I received the news of the terrorattack in New York City, on a TV-monitor at Malmö Centralstation in Sweden. I was on my way back to my apartment, after cancelling a meeting with a medium, actually because of an intuitive hunch that I was called into another direction, that he too perceived. So instead, I just strolled downtown, but a bit on alert and wondered why. Watching the planes fly into the towers seemed completely unbelievable. At first I thought it was some kind of movie showing, as entertainment. Then more and more people gathered, and watched the TV's without sound, hanging over some benches inside the central station. I decided to hurry home and hopped on the next bus. At home, I turned on CNN and watched the live coverage and replays the whole night, trying to grasp what just had happened.
I called Mum in the morning, and emailed Dad, who thought it was a retaliation and pretty much the Americans' own fault. I just thought of his own envy of never going there himself, since he had been banned from entering a decade earlier.
I went to an internet-café and emailed my friend Evy, who was in NYC at the time, with her mother to visit her sister, who lived on Manhattan in a small room attending a design school. Luckily, she and her family was OK. Evy shared, how they had planned on going to the mall at the bottom floor at the World Trade Center that exact day, but how Evy had insisted for them to have coffee first elsewhere, without really knowing why, delaying their visit with half an hour or so - and most likely saving their lives that way!
Evy now works as a bus-driver down south of Sweden, and has even crossed the North African desert with the “Pink buses”. We belonged to the same Swedish organization IKU, for exchange students going to High School abroad. In fact, it was Evy who interviewed and approved me, before I left to go to upstate NY in 1988. We have remained friends for many years after that, moving into the same neighborhood afterwards, and celebrated holidays together, when we both have been single.
Later that weekend, I went clubbing as planned, hosted by two Swedish guys who too had been students at Parson's like Evy's sister. We all shared the same shock.
I also was in email contact with my former classmate of Ticonderoga, Eric, which I had just been emailing during the spring of 2001 about the upcoming Centennial celebration and High school reunion that I was invited to. So wish I had been able to go! He responded how he trusted that the US would be swift in their response to the attack and it struck me how fast Americans are to fight back. Is that good or bad?
Was the terror-attack even a retaliation of some sort that my Dad had said? After all, the United States used to often claim superiority in worldly affairs, seemingly with little insight of the opinion from other countries' citizens. Perhaps due to our experience as exchange students, who get to know the US in our young years that we share then, without the more critical eye, we grow over time. Could I not go back now? I had to go and see.
I visited Manhattan in April 2003, when I was there for about a week to do interviews for my research paper in Workscience. I met with two Lifecoaches and visited the Career center at Columbia University, as a benchmark for creating something similar at Malmö University in Sweden. I had gone to Miami the year before, with the surreal experience of suddenly having to take of my shoes. I also visited “Ground Zero” in 2003 of course, and felt the devastation seep through me, never forgetting seeing the soot on the wall on a house next to the hole in the ground, the visible subway sign sticking up, the pair of boots remaining on the fence outside the little church where firefighters had gathered, and of course the man in a business suit and tie, coming from busy Wall street, standing next to my crying, by the exhibit. It was also then I suddenly felt pollen allergy, and sort of a jetlag that didn’t budge on the third day, that it usually does when I travel. Maybe I breathed in something? It was also later during the fall in Sweden weird things started to happen, out of the normal conflicts and lessons we all face in life, together with the majority of my teeth suddenly breaking down, while my mother’s cancer worsened. Was everything breaking down while Big brother started watching?
In 2005, I got to know a surviving nurse who had moved to Honolulu after 9/11 and received her story. (You can read more about that in my book "The Call for Divine Mothering".)
But, little did I know that I would come to wear an orange jumpsuit myself, just like terrorists, ten years later in 2011... (You can read more about that in my book "The Call for Divine Fathering".)
In 2015, I read a post about “remembering 9/11 2001" on Facebook by a woman from New York called Janessa who offers Pilates in Stockholm. I have been wanting to practice this to strengthen my core muscles and release tensions accordingly, but for a variety of reasons, I have not been able to attend yet. She shared her own memory and I thought of mine. It reconnected me with my love for the United States, as well as the collective grief. I then felt like I had come to understand more of my own former fears of commuting, not to mention being stalked and felt “stopped” from coming on time to many of my meetings, but which at times had saved me from unnecessary draining of energy, or harm. All this has made me grow trust in my intuition and instincts. It seldom is wild animals we must be ready to flee, but other people.
The number 911 is to me, also Archangel Michael’s number - a call for the police and the angels. We can remember that too! Photo borrowed online.