I very rarely really try to think about that day. I try to avoid the articles and such. But this year, something was different. I don't know if it's because my husbands been overseas serving in the war that began in some way after that day, or if it's just been long enough. After reading a few of those articles, I felt compelled to remember, and record my thoughts and memories of that day.
My husband had an appt in another town that morning. We were living with my MIL and I was driving Bug to school in our old town 20 minutes way every day. PB was in home daycare and Monster wasn't even thought of existing at that time. That's hard for me to grasp when I think about that day...we didn't even know he would exist. He's never lived in the world the way it was before 9/11/2001. That makes me pause, and really think.
I was at work. We didn't have television access, and our internet access was extremely limited. I worked in a call center as a telephone rep. Someone's spouse called, and we all began to hear. The conversations on the calls we were taking were surreal. DDS called me to tell me he was on his way back and he was watching planes leave the Air Force Base one right after the other...we have large cargo planes, they don't do that. He knew then something was very wrong. We agreed he would stop and get Bug and PB and take them home, and stay in contact with me. All the information w received that day was second hand. They finally closed the office around lunch time and sent us all home.
I was terrified that our Air Force Base would be a target. I was terrified that my husband would be asked to leave home and fight. I worried about what sort of world we were all going to be living in for the rest of our lives.
I didn't watch the planes hit, the towers burn or their collapse while it was happening, since I was at work. And I'm thankful for that fact. By the time I was able to see the footage, I had already heard and digested what happened. While the images were still shocking, I knew what was going to happen. And after seeing it once, I didn't need to witness it again. We tried to keep the girls away from the news, letting them watch cartoons and videos all afternoon and evening.
I remember walking around the neighborhood that afternoon with the girls. It was so peaceful. The sky was blue and cloudy, and it was eerie to look up and not see a plane flying overhead. We see so many planes here that you stop noticing them after a while...but that day you noticed their absence. It seemed as if even the birds had been grounded. The traffic was so light, it was almost as if we were truly some of the only people left.
I remember the patriotism of the next few weeks. I remember the feeling of pride. But mostly, I remember the fear. My husband had been put on alert, preparing him to go to war. But I wasn't allowed to tell anyone, or say anything. Every time my phone rang, I jumped. I had long conversations with myself, trying to prepare for that call. When people asked if he was getting called up, I had to lie and say we hadn't heard anything. This went on for months...even after we did start the attack. We were on call.
But eventually, I realized that I had to stop thinking about it constantly. I had to live life in my new normal.
Several months later we moved onto that Air Force Base. My children began going to school and daycare on that base. And every night I prayed. We moved off that base, but my children still go to school there. I still pray.