Friday, September 11, 2009

Where Were You?

There are certain dates that are etched in people's minds forever. December 25th brings thoughts of joy, celebration, peace, love and goodwill. February 14th, conjures images of romance, love, flowers and most importantly chocolate. Then there are other dates that we remember. One such date is today's. Sept. 11. I can't believe it has been 8 years since it happened. I, like most, can remember it vividly.

It was a day like any other. Kristin was in preschool 5 days a week for 3 hours a day. It was great. Emily was just barely 1. Every morning we would sit at our little table and eat breakfast. We had a little TV on that table that I would watch in the morning to be up to date on current events. We sat eating our breakfast, and there was the first tower smoldering and ready to crumble. At first, I thought it was simply a demolition of a building. But then it hit me what it was. And I heard the reporter say, "Oh my God...." Reporter's don't talk like that during a report. The first tower was falling. I stared at that little TV unable to move. It wasn't until I heard Kristin asking, "What's wrong, Mommy?" that I realized I needed to pull it together.

I called my husband who was already at work. He knew of course. The base was on tight lock down. No in or out without military ID. I called my mom next. I wanted comfort. I had never known or seen anything like that. Then the Pentagon. And the the 4th one that never made it to its final destination. Everything was shut down in the air and on the ground. You could feel the emptiness and tension in the air you breathed. It was a horrible day. But we licked our wounds and moved forward.

September 11, 2001 brought about the beginning of Homeland Security and our move to DC. In that part of the country and for the first 4 years we lived there, our army base home life was heavily guarded by MP's with big weapons night and day. No one got on that base without some form of ID. And if it wasn't military ID, you had to say where you were going, and where you lived and what your phone number was. That was fine with me. I felt safer.

I hate going through security at the airports now. It is such a pain. And your party can no longer come and meet you or say good bye at the gate. It's sad. But I feel safe that way.

I know we will never forget. How could we? I still get a lump in my throat when I talk about those poor souls leaping out of the towers knowing they were going to die, but it was on their terms. And those men and women on that last flight. Cops, servicemen and women. A smaller flight. It needed to be them. They fought courageously. No, we will never forget. So take a moment of silence. Think of all those who perished. Then to honor them, promise that you will go on. That those attacks won't stop us. That those who died on that horrible day will not have died in vein. Where were you?


Emmy said...

Yes that was quite the day. I know I will never forget.

Carolynn said...

I remember watching the second plane hit. They played it over and over. It was a frightening and sad day. I also remember how everyone stood up and united to make our country even better and safer. May God continue to bless America.

Mamma Christine said...

I was teaching high school in AZ at the time and had to comfort 150 of my students while trying to make sense of it all myself. What a sad, sad day.

Lourie said...

Oh my! Trying to comfort 150 Like you said, it was hard enough to deal with it on an adult level.

Richard said...

From the standpoint of a military man, I was "on point". I had students to teach, school to conduct. The Master Chief called us in as a staff and basically told us to "carry on". Don't ignore it but keep the students busy. We took shifts going to the only room that had television, but then back to work. I haven't cried for 9/11, someday I might, but I do get a lump in my throat for the the patriotism of the country on that day. We are the UNITED States of America.

silfert said...

I was getting ready to be late for work, standing in front of the TV with my mouth open. The second plane hit and I continued to stand there. Horror? Disbelief? Rage? Some of each, layered with near-mindless, repeated prayers.