In light of the recent events, I thought I would share a poem I wrote long before the events last Tuesday, September 11th took place. I feel like we, who are described below, look at the recent events differently and feel a connection to them. I feel as though we are connected to those who are rescuers - especially those who we love dearly and are a part of our family. I cannot imagine what it must be like, but I know that I am affected in a different way - with a different form of respect and understanding for those who are risking their lives. However, this of course is not the first time I have felt this way as you will hear in the poem below, which describes my thoughts about being part of this family and knowing how profoundly it affects me each day. I am thankful for being part of such a warm, loving, caring & daring group of people, who I do not think exist anywhere else on this Earth. ( I write very often, but less often do I share my words, I feel this is a time to share them, to bring us together even more as a family and as Woodbury's). Love, Alexa (Please send to Aunt Joan and Dylan, I don't have their address)

FIREFIGHTER BLOOD

I have firefighter blood.
I am not a firefighter.
I am a sister to a firefighter.
I am a niece to a firefighter.
I am a grandaughter to a firefighter.
I am a cousin to firefighters.
I have firefighter blood.

I grew up in a firefighter house.
I listened to the scanner.
I anxiously awaited details about the call.
I was relieved when the firefighters returned.

Sirens do not bother me.
Sirens remind me that someone is risking their life for another human being.
I wake to sirens each night. I do not sleep through them.
I am not annoyed when sirens awaken me.
I am appreciative that someone, again, is risking their life for another human being.

Flashing lights are a sign to me that help is on the way.
I quickly retreat from the path of the flashing lights.
I sometimes even follow the flashing lights.
Why?
I have firefighter blood.

Firefighter blood is uncommon.
Firefighter blood breeds in families.
Firefighter blood injects adrenaline into all it touches.
Mothers, daughters, sons, fathers.
It touches all who are connected by blood.
Firefighter blood teaches true compassion.
True service. True human emotion. True fear.
True love for those who serve.

I have firefighter blood.
I never escape from the sight of emergency.
I lean towards the need to serve.
I support all others who have firefighter blood.
I support my brother, the firefighter.
I support my uncle, the firefighter.
I support my cousins, the firefighters.
I support my grandpa, a great firefighter.
I support the firefighters who never leave my brother's, uncle's, cousins', grandfather's side in time of duty.
I have firefighter blood.

My children will have firefighter blood.
As my mother has firefighter blood, I, her child, has firefighter blood.
It is an endless cycle that will never be stopped.
Compassionate, loving, brave people emerge from the families that breed firefighter blood.
My family is tied together by firefighter blood.
We are not only tied to one another, but all who serve and all who touch our lives through the veins of firefighter blood.

I have firefighter blood.
I am not a firefighter.
I am a sister to a firefighter.
I am a niece to a firefighter.
I am a grandaughter to a firefighter.
I am a cousin to firefighters.
I have firefighter blood.
-Alexa Thomas, 2001