And Pause to Remember

butterfly

Today is the 8th anniversary of the day that changed America forever.

September 11, 2001 was a day that will mark our generation.

It reminds me just how fragile and short our time on this earth is. Like the butterfly above, we are fragile. We are not guaranteed any amount of time, peace, or happiness. We live our lives while we are here and then we are gone. In the blink of an eye really.

I have lived thousands of days here on Earth. There are few that I can say with any true clarity where I was at any given moment during any days. 

But that is a day that I can tell you exactly where I was from the time I woke up that morning until the time I went to bed that night crying myself to sleep.

My husband and I said good-bye, just like any other day.

I drove the kids to school.

I drove over to the local junior high school to fill in for one of the science teachers who had taken the day off.

I taught the first period class and sent two girls to see the counselor because a disagreement in the hallway carried over into the classroom.

An announcement came over the P.A. system that a plane had crashed into The World Trade Center and would we please turn on the closed circuit television to the news broadcast.

Thirty or so 12 and 13-year-olds and I watched the footage of the plane crashing into the tower. The scene then changed to a live feed of the tower. The room was silent as we watched and some of us began to cry.

Then, as we watched live, a second plane crashed into the other tower.

We were all confused as to whether this was just a replay, but quickly understood because of the smoke pouring from the first building what was truly taking place.

The silent tears quickly turned to sobs of understanding. Just as they still do now as I write this.

School let out soon after. Once I was able, I rushed to pick up my own children and just held them in my arms while I cried.

Luckily, the lower grades had not watched the broadcasts.

My husband left work early and we sat in front of the television watching the horror that was on the screen. Still unable to believe that this was truly taking place.

When I couldn’t take it anymore, I turned off the T.V. and just curled up in a ball on the bed crying myself to sleep.

I was scared to leave the house for months. If this could happen, how could I feel safe anywhere anymore?

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September 11, 2009. Notebook.

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