December 2001

Dear Readers,

I know. It's been a long time.

Different people grieve in different ways. After the shock of September 11, I managed to meet a looming deadline, but that's all I managed to do. Everything else went on hold, including, of course, the next letter to you.

After two months of compulsively following the news and pondering all that's been and that might yet be; after seeing the worst and the best that mankind has to offer, have I come up with any profound realizations? Yes, and they're exactly the same ones that you've all figured out: family matters. Money doesn't. Love matters. Money doesn't.

Oh, I'd dealt with that conviction in book after book, but not the way I dealt with it on 9/11, reeling from it the way I would from a blow to the heart with a bat. Like everyone else, I will forever divide my life into the time before that date, and the time after it. But it's only now, with the weeks that have elapsed since then, that I'm beginning to understand that life after 9/11 may well be richer, deeper, and more meaningful than anything that came before it. September 11 put everything in perspective, didn't it.

As long as we remember to make it so.

Warm wishes,

Antoinette Stockenberg

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