Never Forget

It was a beautiful, clear, crisp morning. The sky was so blue and looked even bluer with the few white, puffy clouds floating in it. I heard the news that an airplane hit a tower of the World Trade Center. I was shocked. Then, there was news of another plane hitting the other tower. I was in my car. There was a sense of panic and disbelief as the radio reported another crash. This one closer to me. What is going on? Are we being attacked? I thought we must need to go somewhere. To hide. The planes are crashing all around us. We must be next. I called my dad. He was upset, but unsure. I called my husband. Should I pick up the kids from school? He asked me,”Are you OK?” I was crying. “No, I’m not OK, but I’m fine.” My friend Susan was already at the elementary school and she called me, “I’ll grab the kids for you.” I tell her, “I’m on my way home! I’ll meet you at my house.” We had no words to say to each other. We could not comprehend what was happening. And, we were afraid. My husband came rushing home. We watched as much TV coverage as we could while trying not to upset the children. I was crying off and on the rest of the day, and really the rest of the week. I knew now what was happening and what it meant. There was nothing to do but watch the TV coverage in horror. How? Why? Who? And, in the amazing quiet that ensued over the next couple of days, we all sought to find our normal routine. It would never feel the same. Our safety, our security, our untouchable-ness, all of it altered in a way we could not have previously imagined. I did not lose a loved one that day. But, I still was angry. I wanted to help, to do something to make it better. We had a candle light vigil on our street. I think maybe everyone did. We prayed. Some members of my husband’s side of the family – his NY State Trooper brother and his fireman brother-in-law- went to help in the aftermath. We went back to our lives, our new normal. We did what I’m sure many Americans not living in the impact zones did. We prayed for those lost and those who lost a loved one. Then we resolved to never forget. I will never forget.

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