Thursday, September 11, 2008
LEAST WE FORGET.....
I can't believe that it's been 7 years since that fateful day in September, 2001, when our country was changed forever. It started out normally for me as I went about my usual routine getting ready for another day of teaching 5th grade on a rather warm day in Arizona. Suddenly Matt Lauer announced that a plane had hit the World Trade Center! Hmmm, the pilot of that small aircraft must have been asleep at the wheel.....or so I thought! I really kept thinking of the time a small plane hit the Empire State Building and I just assumed that something similar happened. Boy was I wrong! When I realized that a second plane hit the other tower, I knew something far more serious was going on. Another teacher from school called me and asked if I was watching the news. My response was, "Is our country under siege?"
All the teachers managed to get to school early that day and our principal hastily called a meeting requesting that we NOT have our classroom televisions on while the students were in the room. Can you imagine not knowing what was happening throughout the day? Of course we put our TVs on during our preps and lunch to learn more about the horrific things happening in NY, PA, and at the Pentagon.
I was in contact with my husband who happened to be working at our local airport that day and he told me that all flights were canceled. He also told me that everyone in the terminals was glued to the TVs and that life just seemed to be standing still.
My daughter was a few hours away at college but I knew she was okay from our frequent phone calls. Her classes were canceled so she sat at home with her roommates watching the coverage of the tragic events. I seemed to be the only one who was out of touch with reality that day.
My students asked questions....I had no answers. I kept asking myself questions....still no answers. I wanted to know why, how, who.....what exactly was happening to our country. The word "terrorists" kept being repeated on TV but I really didn't know who the terrorists were or why they wanted to cause so much destruction and grief. What had the USA done and to whom? In the days that followed, we learned who was responsible and how the plan was carried out. I was still puzzled and a bit confused by everything that was happening, but I never realized what an enormous impact 9/11 would have on our lives. Things changed drastically that fateful day. Fear.....so many people were fearful to fly and fearful of more attacks, Hope....many people suddenly had more hope that our country would bounce back from this tragedy,....Patriotism.....I've never seen so many flags flying in defiance of misguided ideals, Courage....courageous souls offered aid and comfort to the injured, bewildered, dying, weeping, and masses searching for help, Anger.....the enemy had to answer for the innocent lives taken due to fanaticism.
I reflect and I know how our country has changed because of what happened. I, too, have changed. I hold loved ones dearer, gives thanks more often, speak with God daily, and look for peace amidst turmoil. God bless us and our country.....we have experienced and witnessed much.....but we will prevail.