Thursday, September 11, 2008

Remembering

Today is September 11th. It is the 7th anniversary of that terrible, life-changing day that our country was attacked by terrorists and so many people lost so much. It seemed to go by without as much acknowledgement as it has in the past, but I still remember where I was, what I was doing, and how I felt. I was a fairly new mother -- I had an 8-month-old baby at home. I had been back to work for a few months and my sweet baby was in day care 3 days a week. That was difficult enough before 9/11. On that morning, while I was working, my husband was home with our daughter. He was supposed to go into work late, and drop our little one off at the day care for the afternoon. I wanted him to stay home from work with our daughter -- I was panicking that the whole country was being attacked and I didn't want her away from us. I remember calling him to tell him what happened, and wanting to race home to be with them. I remember sitting in my office on the phone with him talking about what to do and what was happening. I remember the trembling of his voice when he told me what he was seeing on television -- something that he, having grown up in Long Island and worked at the World Trade Center in NYC, had never thought he would live to see -- the towers crumbling to the ground. We talked about his family in Long Island, our friends who lived in the city.

We were supposed to go to Long Island just a couple of days later, and the whole world seemed in turmoil, we didn't know what to do. We called relatives and found out that most of the family was safe, but one cousin was a firefighter and he had gone into the towers to help. He never made it out. He left behind a beautiful family - his wife and three sons.

My husband and I don't spend a lot of time watching the all-day news channels, but from that afternoon when I got home from work, that's all I watched for days. We were in a fog. People were telling us on television to have escape routes and bottled water and non-perishable food stored in case of attack. I had supplies packed in our car, in case we needed to escape, and I had a plan of what we could quickly have set up in the basement if we needed to move down in there. The news reports were telling us to buy plastic and duct tape to seal up windows and doors. I couldn't help but think how devastatingly unfair it was that I would have just had this beautiful little baby and all of a sudden life as we knew it was coming to an end. I was afraid to take her to day care because I was afraid that we would be attacked and I wouldn't be able to get to her. My friend Kristin had just told me on 9/10 that she and her husband and decided to try to have a baby. And the next day the world changed -- it felt like we couldn't even think about the future. And that is exactly what terrorism is all about.

After about a week or two of panic and fear and walking around in a daze, I realized that I was spending all of my time preparing for the unknown and that I had this precious little baby to take care of and to love. She was happy, she didn't know what was going on, she just wanted to snuggle and wiggle and squeal with delight. I had to start functioning again for her sake. I shut off the news and I turned my attention back to what was most important -- living each day with the people that I love.

I will never forget that time or that feeling, and I don't think that any of us ever should. I thank God for the people that are willing and able to fight to protect us, I pray for all of the people who were lost that day and for the loved ones that they left behind. And I pray that our children never have to know that feeling of terror. God bless us all.

2 comments:

Teamcarbone said...

Wow you’re right it was just before 9/11 when we had the "baby" chat. (my mind tends to blear year together) Sadly it took another 6 years my our LO to arrive but we were blessed just the same...

I agree that as the years go by the fear we felt on that day in 2001 has diminished ever so slightly which is way I wanted to post a thank you for posting your story of remembrance. As you pointed out we need to move forward in life but keep our history close to heart.

Deanna said...

She's a great blessing and in true child-like fashion, she came on her own time schedule!

Thanks for the nice sentiment!!