Westmont Magazine It's About Faces
By Ashley Pearson ’93
As a television producer for MSNBC news, I have been and continue to be swept off my feet by work and inundated with this story. I have not had a weekend off, or a moment away from it all since the 11th. It is my life nearly every waking moment. Therefore, I have not been able to reflect because I am still too deep IN it.
Because of my lack of distance and perspective, reflection is difficult, for when I’m not at work or sleeping, I do my best to think of ANYTHING but the events of Sept. 11. I have seen video footage and photos of every face — both victims and hijackers — heard every story, and watched the collapse of the WTC nearly 100 times on my screen. I have been surrounded by images that I would give almost anything in order to be able to forget.
Opening letters with anthrax, being blown up in the Lincoln Tunnel in my daily commute, these dreams are still what wait for me when I fall asleep. I am therefore not far enough away from it yet to be ready to talk about it and occasionally worry that I may never be able to.
As hard as I am working, I am grateful to the core of my being that my loved ones are all OK. Every time I walk outside, I am bombarded with faces smiling at me from every bus stop and hospital window in the city. They say “missing” in a large black scrawl, and they are the faces of the dead. That’s the thing about living here — it’s not about numbers, or even names, or total counts — it’s about faces.