One moment, he was sitting down to a meal — the eggs scrambled, the toast buttered, steam rising from a cup of coffee. And then, a knock on the door. Annoyed to leave the table, he answered, not suspecting that from then on his life would be divided in two. Before and after.
Her heart began beating eight months before she was born — decades ago. Ba-bum, ba-bum, over and over and over. Never had she paid much attention to its simple rhythm. Until that phone call which brought with it a pain so intense, so actually heart-wrenching, that she wished it would just stop and let her leave this world behind.
Some were on the bus, some in a bar; a few were hiking in the hills. Some saw it coming, some didn’t. Those who heard a deafening blast and then nothing wonder what it may have been like to catch a glint of the knife and run. Some made it to shelter just in time. Others not.
There are those who carry the signs visible for all to see. A leg not there. A face disfigured. There are those whose scars are hidden, reconstructed sinew and bone beneath the button-down shirts. And there are those whose wounds lie deeper still.
Your neighbors: the man who drives the bus. The young woman answering the phone. The boy crossing the street on his way to school. They, and I too, all belong to a club that wants no members. We have all had our lives indelibly marked by terror.
A son murdered. A father stabbed. A sister blown up as she lay on top of her younger sibling, the field just a bit too far from hardened concrete. We all sit down to a table with an empty seat.
And still all of us have found, when that gaping hole seems too deep, when we feared that no one could ever understand what had become of us — a place to catch our breath, calm down, and move on.
One Family — an organization devoted to aiding survivors of terror attacks and bereaved family members — has become the second home for thousands of those whose lives have been torn asunder. Through therapy, classes, outings and more, One Family helps rebuild shattered lives.
Please click here to support via our matching campaign, learn some more and help make a difference in so many lives.