I remember my mother telling me that she could remember exactly what she was doing and the clothes she was wearing the day President Kennedy was assassinated. I was a teenager when she told me and she mentioned that the world just stopped. She said it was the end of the Camelot era and the end of innocence. I was born one year after President Kennedy was assassinated, so I never really understood what she meant.
Unfortunately, I came to understand it September 11, 2001. I was seven months pregnant with my second child and I remember the day beginning like any other day. Waking up, taking a shower, making breakfast for my two year old son and getting dressed for work. I didn’t have time to listen to the tv or the radio during my morning routine. In the car on the way to work I turned on the radio to listen to music and the man on the radio said that one of the twin towers in New York had just come down. I was confused because he said that a terrorist had flown a plane into the building. I remember thinking, how did terrorists steal a plane and fly it into a building? The weird thing is all I focused on was a plane full of terrorists and a building, my brain would not let me process that the plane was full of innocent men, women, children and that the building was full of men and women just making their buck for the day.
I can fully remember what I was wearing; black maternity pants with a panel that was made out of stretchy material, a long sleeve striped shirt that was black, red and grey and a pair of black loafers. I can see that outfit as if I was wearing it today and I can tell you what street the red light was on where I was waiting for it to turn green when I reached down to turn on the radio. It’s like the moment is carved into my brain forever to remember and when I try to think of what I wore yesterday I wouldn’t be able to tell you. It wasn’t until I got to work and sat down at my desk did the full extent of what had happened hit me, the planes were full of men, women and children, the building was full of men and women and I was just stunned.
None of us worked that day, we all stood around tv’s in absolute shock and the world just stopped. 911 was the end of freedom, the end of living without fear where ever we go. Amazingly, America has come so far and time has helped in strengthening and healing but as we watch from distant shores we must never forget all the loved ones who perished that horrible day and I hope I never again sit at a red light, reach down to innocently turn on the radio only to have the simple gesture stamped in my brain forever.
The pictures I found on the internet today tell all; the senseless loss symbolized by names of loved ones on a cold wall.