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If you were alive on September 11th, 2001 and were old enough to know what was going on I don’t think there is any chance that you will ever forget where you were when you got the news that our Nation was under attack.
I will never forget turning the radio on for the first time that morning after dropping my two babies off at childcare. I will never forget the words that were spoken on the radio that let me know our lives had forever been altered. I will never forget the intense desire to turn around and go gather those babies in my arms and stay huddled in our little home hopefully safe from everything going on. I will never forget calling Nate and frantically telling him to turn on the radio, the call to Paula to tell her to turn on the TV, and even worse the phone call I made home, trying to hold myself together so I didn’t scare my little brother while I insisted he wake mom up so I could talk to her. The moment she said “hello” I broke down trying to explain to her what was going on. I remember making it to the office with tears in my eyes only to be greeted by others with tears in their eyes. We all holed up in the conference room watching whatever coverage we could find that would give us some sort of explanation. I remember finally leaving early in the day and going and getting my little ones and spending the day and evening holding them close. Trying to not be a wreck. I remember being unable to stop watching the coverage and sitting there thinking over and over “this cannot really be happening”.
And then I remember swelling with pride as American flags were sold out everywhere, seeing them on houses, in lawns, on trucks and cars. I remember feeling so blessed to see this country that I love so much doing exactly what it should do every day. We banded together, we were one, we were proud to be Americans and we weren’t afraid to show it. We picked up our brothers and sisters and helped where we could. We were impressive, we were strong, we were united.
Two years ago I wrote this on my family blog:
Nothing has changed, to this day a song will come on the radio (most recently it was Mark Wills Wish You Were Here) and my heart will break all over again and tears stream down my face as I imagine what people went through that day, what those families are still going through today. Their mornings probably started just like mine did that day, normal, they woke up and did the things they’ve done hundreds possibly thousands of times and had no idea that their lives and the lives of all of us would be changed forever.
Today we’ll go to the Healing Field, we’ll talk and remember, I will once again be thanking my Father in Heaven for keeping us safe, for blessing us so greatly, for those who run in when the rest of us run out.
We must never forget how even with such tragedy we rose above. We didn’t let them win then, we can’t let them win now. Hold your family tight tonight. Tell them you love them. Honor those who lost their lives that day, who don’t have the opportunity to do that any more. Honor those families who are missing a loved one when they’re gathered together because of 9/11. Tell your kids about what happened that day, not to scare them but so they can know about real heroes, people who don’t have super powers or capes but ran in to help anyway. Tell them about how we were in the days after 9/11, how we were truly something to be proud of and lets be that again.