It’s September 11th. I’m not going to write this big, huge article about the events that took place that day. If you were alive somewhere in the world when this happened, you will never forget.
I was about 16 years old. I was in high school, in my financial math class. Someone tapped me on my shoulder to wake me up from the uncomfortable position I’d fell asleep in on my desk. I wiped the drool off my cheek and looked up at the TV my teacher turned on. Two tall buildings were on fire and gray smoke was streaming out of them. I remember thinking for a moment, “Man, that sucks”. Then the bell rang and I went on with my day.
I was only 16. What mattered to me was what I was going to do that weekend and with who.
It wasn’t until I was in my mid-twenties that I realized the impact of that day. Of course I knew of all lives that were lost and all of the details, but I didn’t fully understand. I didn’t fully comprehend the severity of the attacks and what it did to our country.
One year, I sat down and watched ALL of the television shows on The History Channel and National Geographic Channel. I watched shows about the day it happened, what happened after, the history of the Twin Towers, what happened at the Pentagon, the days leading up to that day, what happened on the planes, and many more. I cried, I became angry…but I stilled watched.
At first I thought there must be something wrong with me. Why do I want to sit and watch the horrible loss the world experienced that day every single year? I thought I have some kind of morbid obsession and I must be crazy!
But I soon realized that it wasn’t because I enjoyed watching lives end that day, it was because I began to care about those people. I wanted to know more about them…about what kind of people they were and where they came from and who they were. I was grieving for them, even though I didn’t personally know them.
I still watch those yearly, even if I’ve seen them already. Every time I watch, a part of my brain wishes that I was some kind of super hero…wishing I could have flown up to each floor and saved them all. A sense of sadness and pain still washes over me. I will never even come close to feeling that same sadness and pain the families and friends of the 9/11 victims struggle with on a daily basis. But during this time every year, they are always in my thoughts and prayers, along with everyone else that this has directly impacted. A war came out of this, and we can’t forget those who have lost their lives out there. My husband was a part of that war, and I thank God every day that he came back safe and sound because if he didn’t, we wouldn’t have each other.
We will always remember.