life during wartime

there are days when i wonder whether my psyche has ever been the same and will ever be the same since 9/11. there is this wacky rush of adrenaline i still feel when i encounter things that aren't quite normal; and yet i feel like i am supposed to learn to accept these things as normal when they simply are not.

today, i drove downtown for a meeting. as i went south on the GW Parkway, i noticed a ton of traffic sitting, waiting to get on to the Roosevelt Bridge. so i cut around and went further south and crossed over the Memorial Bridge. i followed independence to 15th street. seemed like a good enough place to cross over to constitution ave., i thought. a few blocks later, everyone on constitution was diverted by police off towards pennsylvania ave. the entire area around the Dept of Justice was completely blocked off by tons, and i do mean tons, of police cars. now, pre-9/11, i would probably have not thought anything of it. but, as i turned onto penn, i noticed many more cop cars around the building, some with racks of weapons on top of the trunk area.

all those guns.

there are days when i feel like this whole area is under siege and things will never be the same ever. and i feign normalcy with every fiber of my being because i believe so strongly that my kids deserve nothing less than a calm world. it wears me out. but when they are old enough to notice guns all over the place, when they are old enough to realize that the water and food supplies we have downstairs are not simply “in case we lose power,” well, that will be a sad day, indeed. i even freaked out today because i missed my turn off 395 and ended up in the pentagon parking lot. all i kept thinking was, OMG, i am not meaning to trespass. i really, really am not an intruder. i just want to go home and made a wrong turn, like a zillion other tourists who end up here. only now, there are people with guns all over the place. and i am really lost.

my psyche needs a rest.

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