Moms do more than their fair share of worrying about their family’s safety. The make sure their kids wear jackets as they make their way to school on chilly spring mornings . They make sure their child has (more than) enough snacks packed for that weekend sleepover at a friend’s house. They insist their husbands call if they’re leaving work late, when they arrive at the airport, when they reach their mother’s house, and at every other possible checkpoint–just to make sure they’re OK.
With all the worrying mothers do, most would agree it’s been worse since 9/11. Since that day, terrorist acts have seemed to be the norm–with Osama bin Laden at the helm.
On 9/11, my son was less than 12 months old. And as the mother of a young baby, I was particularly fearful (as most new moms are) knowing that there was a man on the loose who cared nothing for human life, and who actually TARGETED innocents to murder.
As the months passed, I was bewildered by the idea that a single man could evade capture when it seemed the entire free world was hunting for him. Years passed, and the bombings continued–and I wondered if we would ever capture Osama bin Laden. Or perhaps the rumors on the Internet were true–that he had been killed long ago, and his body had simply never been identified.
This morning, when I heard on the radio that Osama bin Laden had been killed, relief washed over me. With the leader of the Taliban movement finally gone, he wouldn’t be able to orchestrate any more killings of innocent people around the world.
Yet most of us realize that that the death of one man won’t change the attitudes of thousands of followers–at least, not overnight–so the war may continue on for a while, yet. But with one less hateful man stoking the fires of others’ fears and hatred, we can hope that turmoil will slowly be replaced by reason, and that the attacks on innocent people will end.
I will continue to be vigilant as I go about my daily life, as must all mothers. This has always been the way of things. But now, we can feel a hopefulness that has been absent since 9/11–hope that we can start to feel safe again as we take our kids to the movies, the zoo, and public places on holidays without fearing that we’re risking our family’s lives.