Wednesday, July 3, 2013

a new meaning to Independence Day

On Patriots Day, a Massachusetts holiday, I was celebrating a gorgeous Spring day with T and Sprout out in Concord (of - history time! - the Battles of Lexington and Concord). I had no idea that just a few short hours later I would get a text message that would have us rushing to a Boston hospital.

T and Sprout in Concord

The text that came through was from my older sister, who was downtown Boston celebrating her birthday. She and a friend had been at the marathon finish line to watch a friend running and were both severely injured in the first bomb that went off that day.

It felt like years went by before we were able to see her in the ICU. And as each day went by, I was more impressed with her strength and positivity than ever before. Soon she was using a walker, then crutches, and then was ready to go home to continue her recovery. To me, each step she took was a small victory.

photos taken at the Boston Marathon Memorial

While my sister made huge strides in her recovery, what we experienced as a family was incredible. Support from across the United States rolled in, with cards from schoolchildren across the country, flowers from old friends, and phone calls, emails, texts just to tell us that people were thinking of us and our city.

For me, this Independence Day means more than fireworks and pool parties and cute headbands with sequins and stars. I'm celebrating not only all of the service people who have sacrificed to give us our freedom, but also all of those affected by the Boston Marathon bombs, the resilience and positivity they have shown, and everyone who has supported them and will continue to support them. The spirit of this country truly comes out in times of despair and makes me so proud to be an American.

Happy Independence Day, America!

"The love of liberty is the love of others; the love of power is the love of ourselves."  via

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