out of the ashes

 A couple of years ago, a girlfriend sent me this photo with this note attached:

Graffiti at Ground Zero after 9/11
“This was on side of the road at ground Zero in NYC after 9/11. Taken by a gal that I know. It’s one of my favorites. I have the original and often find myself staring at it. Can’t imagine the horror of it all and yet having the courage & guts to spray paint this…bet it was a #cowboyupgurlz…
Her note arrived during my own personal 9/11 when the entire infrastructure of my life had collapsed and I was wandering through my days, confused and stunned like those ghostly, ash-covered pedestrians caught nearby when the Twin Towers collapsed. Notes like this one were lifelines for me. I wasn’t alone. And I wasn’t dead. I could cling to the love of our “#cowboyupgurlz club” of women who also had risen from a pile of ashes. 
When the playing field of life is flattened, the way it was for our whole nation on 9/11/2001, nothing else is important except saying, “I love you” before it’s too late.  
©2011 Stephanie Ericsson