Saturday, September 11, 2010

Remembering September 11, 2001

I wrote the following edited account of September 11th on January 29, 2002:

Upon turning on the TV nothing could have prepared me for what I saw. The second tower to be hit had already collapsed and seconds after turning on the TV, Tower I collapsed right before our eyes. I burst into tears. All I could think of was all the people in that building, possibly thousands, who were killed right before our very eyes!

This is what I experienced after receiving a phone call from Husband shortly after 7 AM that Tuesday morning. He was out of town on a business trip and scheduled to return that night. A normal morning of getting two kids ready for school was transformed by his words over the phone, "There's some really bad stuff going on in the world." A plane had been crashed into the World Trade Center and other airplanes were missing. He told me I needed to turn on the TV. Of course I was stunned and very shaken...finished drying my hair...fed the kids...told them what had happened and that we needed to turn on the TV and see what was up.
I went ahead and took the kids to school that day. On the radio and TV that morning I learned of the plane crashing into the Pentagon and another report of a crash in Pennsylvania. There was also talk of one near Chicago but that eventually died out as the morning wore on. It was sickening and awful. Of course all air traffic in the US was ordered grounded - a first.

Then my thoughts turned to family. Mother-in-law was on a cruise in Europe, other family members were in Italy, another relative travels for work constantly and there was no telling where she was. What about Husband? He obviously wasn't coming home that night!

The following days were filled with so much emotion: sorrow over such needless loss of innocent life, despair, fear, anger towards whoever had done this, defiance that they were not going to get the better of us. Emotions that have not completely subsided nine years later.

I was also busy making arrangements to get Husband home safely which is another story. Finally, there were 2 little girls whose daddy was stuck in another part of the country. They needed to know he was safe and would be coming home and they needed their mommy to be at her best.

One of the memories that stuck in my mind is the quiet outside of our house in the days following 9-11. We have a fair amount of air traffic as we are on the approach to the Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport and have another local airport a few miles away. In fact, I hear a jet approaching Sky Harbor off in the distance as I write this. The quiet was weird and really stood out. Part of our everyday life was literally missing. While I love peace and quiet, this is a quiet I hope to never experience at my home again.
© 2010, copyright Michelle Goodrum

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