I can still remember sitting in our home office when my husband burst into the room. He had our cordless phone pushed to his ear and had a terrified look on his face. He looked at me, but addressed the person on the phone “They attacked the Pentagon?” Then he said to me, “Go turn on CNN!” I jumped up and hurried to the living room and picked up the television remote.
Then I just sat there, staring at the remote in my hand. I didn’t know what station CNN was on. You see, I really don’t like watching the news. I especially loath world news or news reporting the state of our country. I avoided it whenever possible, so I really didn’t care what station CNN was on, until now.
Impatiently, my husband again instructed me to turn on the tv. I did, then asked him what station to turn it to. He looked shocked and took the remote from my hand.
The next few minutes are a blur. I remember crying in disbelief. I know I picked up my then almost 3 year old son and trying to hug him close. He only tolerated that for a few moments, then he wiggled to the ground to go play. I remember my husband pacing, cursing. We watched the towers fall again and again. He had been retired from the Coast Guard for only 3 years. I prayed he wouldn’t be recalled.
For the next week, it seemed that most of the people I talked to had been affected in one way or another. Most had lost acquaintances, a friend of a friend or simply a voice on the phone. So many companies had an office in the World Trade Center; every business I went to was shaken.
Others had lost loved ones; parents, brothers, sisters or other family members. For the first few days after people hardly spoke. We had actually been attacked on United States soil. Everyone feared more was coming.
When our shocked subsided, our fierce determination took over. People became closer, neighbors more neighborly. Flags flew everywhere. We are Americans and are not going quietly into the night.
Fast forward to this morning, my wiggly tot is now almost 15. On our way to school we listen to our favorite Christian radio station. Instead of the usual contemporary Christian music, they played a timeline of events from 9/11/2001. I couldn’t help but let the tears fall. The broadcast was well done, but full of emotion and raw accuracy.
My son listened too, sending an occasional look of concern my way. Finally he said “I was about 2, right?” I nodded and we spent the rest of the drive in silence. Just yesterday, he had explained the situation in Syria to me in great detail. Today, he seemed to know that most words to describe 9/11 have all been said. Wow! My boy is nearly grown!
The rest of this day has been quite the emotional rollercoaster. Everything to launch my business seemed to fall in place. As I took each step I was filled with excitement. I found everything I needed to package my products, completed my photography, set up my online store and made my first local delivery to the feed store who has agreed to sell my products.
But each step was punctuated by reminders of the day we can never forget. The overgrown flag at the shopping center is at half-mast. More posts than I can count on Facebook, instructing me to “like” this post to show I haven’t forgotten. And beautifully written accounts of how some of my (very talented) friends remember the day. At each stop, the tears threaten again.
But life does go on. So I can’t feel guilty because this is a good day for me. But I do promise you this. I will never forget. We are so blessed to live in the Land of the Free, because of the brave.
God Bless America