No really. I look back on September 11th and think about that day as we all do. And I am reminded that I am an asshole. Not intentionally, but still.
I was 7 months pregnant and working when I heard a co-worker say a plane had hit a building. Now, considering 9/11 hadn’t happened I truly thought it was some little Cesna that clipped something. I never thought anyone would be dead or that catastrophe would soon follow. But either way the thing I did next still haunts me.
I still cringe thinking about this reaction. It was an asshole thing to do even if it was a little plan that clipped something. But for some reason that was my reaction.
Then everything began to unfold and it was horrific and ungodly and I didn’t know how to process it. I asked to go home from work but was denied. I asked to go home because my husband had just gotten home from the end of his tour in the Army (by tour I mean end of his obligation, his 3 years. He never went to a war zone and fought.) But since he was still technically in the Army I just knew they would call him back. I knew it in my heart of hearts.
When I finally did arrive home I woke him up and told him what happened and he began to make phone calls. He packed his ruck sack and got ready to get the call.
I went to my room and wrote him a letter from his unborn son to put in that bag. Telling him that no matter what happens he has his son and his wife waiting on him and that we are so very proud of him.
But I’m still an asshole. I was still just worried about me. I can say that it is because I didn’t know anyone effected by 9/11 directly. I didn’t know anyone in NY or anyone who worked in the Pentagon. I was only worried about me and that is an asshole thing to do.
But as the news sank in about all the lives lost about the bravery of men and women who rushed in to help and in turn gave their lives for others I wept. I wept for about 24 hours straight. They kept playing the footage of the plane crashing into the buildings over and over. I cried imagining the fear they all must have felt, knowing this was it. Knowing they would never get a chance to say goodbye. Knowing this was the end.
I share this because every year I have made a point to remember. While my story sticks out in my mind, I also make sure and remember those who lost their lives in a cowardice act of terrorism. All of those people and their friends and family who lost someone that day. I commemorate this day each year because it deserves it. Every year I am on this earth I will remember. I will say a prayer for those who this day means loss and heartache and painful personal memories. I will pray that they find peace and comfort.
Woman on Pause