Sunday, September 11, 2011

10 Years Later, We Remember

We'll Never Forget.

It's a phrase that was coined back in 2001, and how true it rings.

Even today, the events of the day are still fresh in my mind.

I was 6 months pregnant with my son, and the phone rang. It was still rather early (being as we're an hour behind the East coast), so a phone call at this hour was not usual. It was my mother, who told me to turn on the tv, that a plane hit the World Trade Center.

I hung up with my mom, and watched the news footage as I got ready for work. Honestly, the only thing I can't really remember is if she had called me before or after the 2nd tower was struck.

I know they mentioned the words "foul play" on the news, and the naive-positive-thinker in me looked at my husband and said "What does that mean? They think it was done on purpose?"

I continued on my way to work, having only the radio to keep me filled in on what was going on. As soon as I arrived at the office, I immediately sent emails to family that lives in CT and I knew worked in NYC, as the phone lines were so tied up, there was no reaching them. I scoured the web for any news feeds, as we all had to inform us in the office was the radio.

I felt helpless, and a bit disconnected from what was going on. I was a member of several mailing lists, and the flow of emails was quick and constant. It was my only "real-time" source aside from the radio.

As I was receiving more and more information about what was happening, the more frightened we became at work, and the more I wanted to go home. I kept in touch with my husband by phone. He was at a very large, busy mall in the area, and I was getting news of many popular, highly populated or busy areas being evacuated or closed. We had no idea what was happening, and at this point no one felt safe.

I was feeling a bunch of emotions; scared, worried, helpless, but it wasn't until I got an email from my Uncle that they were all okay, that I started to truly grasp everything.

I called my mom and couldn't even get the words out, as my voice broke and the tears flowed. I sat at my desk and cried.

Both towers had been struck, the Pentagon was struck, a plane went down in PA, the entire airspace was shut down for the first time in history, the towers both collapsed....

My boss called and instructed "Finish up and go home."

Upon another phone call to my husband, the mall was going back and forth on their decision whether or not to close, and the corporate headquarters of his company was based in NYC so he could not reach them by phone. He had made the decision to close just before the mall finally instructed that they would be closing the entire facility.

There were many more tears that day. I fell asleep with swollen eyes and an ache in my heart.

And now, 10 years later, those tears still flow just as easily and that ache in my heart remains. To think about those people that had just sat down at their desks, or the firefighters who were only trying to get people to safety, or the innocent children on those flights, those individuals who leaped to their death.....

They were husbands and fathers. Sisters and brothers. Wives and mothers. Cousins. Aunts and Uncles. Grandparents. Sons and daughters. Grandchildren. Coworkers. Friends.

The entire nation, the entire world .... watched that day.

And the truth in the matter is, We Will NEVER forget.

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