My husband was rushing around, paying some bills before going to work. He was pacing up and down the hall with the phone, annoyed that it was taking too long for them to answer. My son was not quite 3 and I think was just waking up. I was tending to him when my husband suddenly stopped and said "They attacked the Pentagon?"
He quickly told me to turn on CNN. I picked up the remote and stared at. I have never been a big fan of the news. I know people who can sit in front of a world news station for hours. Not me. But now I felt lost because I couldn't fulfill his request. I looked at him helplessly and I think he took the remote from me.
The next hours were surreal as we watched the events unfold. Over and over we saw the planes, the smoking towers, then one collapse, then the other. We learned all sorts of things we didn't know before, like the signal on a firefighter’s equipment that goes off if he falls down. Images of devastation right here on American soil. We were stunned. I don’t think I have ever felt so vulnerable.
Almost everyone we knew and met along the way somehow had a connection to those towers. Our doctor’s receptionist talked to an insurance company in the towers regularly. She knew them by name. Some people had friends, relatives. One person I knew had just transferred to Florida from New York.
But that is what they wanted. To make us feel like we were not safe. To stop trusting one another and turn on each other.
But that is not what happened.
We hugged each other tighter. Talk with friends longer. Flags went up in front of homes and businesses. I believe we are stronger today than we have ever been, at least in my lifetime.
Where were you 13 years ago today? Take a moment to remember, because we should not forget, ever. I’m sure I won’t.
May God continue to bless our nation.