Tuesday, September 19, 2006

My Memory of 9/11

I know this is over a week late, but it's a school assigment, so I have no choice. Since it is a school assignment, feel free to critique it. It was supposed to be 200-350 words, but I seemed to have doubled that with about 725 words. Yikes! Hope you enjoy it anyway.

It was a little before nine o’clock in the morning on Tuesday, September 11, 2001. Having just finished breakfast, I was beginning the school day. I sat down in our family room chair with my first subject of the day. Looking out the back slider doors, I was relaxed by what I saw. The sun was warming the deck chairs I contemplated sitting in later that day, the sky was a gorgeous blue, the wind was slightly blowing, and it did not appear anything could ruin the day. A few moments later the phone rings and my mom quickly tells us that Dad said to turn on the TV. I was a bit annoyed. Usually anything my parents say to watch ends up being boring, and I had a full day of school ahead. I definitely did not have time to waste. However, I had no choice, so I sat there ready to endure the pain a boring interview with some 80’s rock star I never heard of. Instead, what appeared on the screen was not something I had prepared myself to see. Wide-eyed and confused, my eyes focused on a tall building that was on fire in New York. As the news anchor explained that a plane flew into the World Trade Center, I was unsure exactly what was going on. Freak accident? No one seemed to be thinking that was the case. What exactly is the World Trade Center anyway? This 12-year-old girl had no idea. Although it is not every day a plane crashes into a building, I needed to get back to school, regardless what was going on. The news anchor seemed to be repeating himself just so there was not silence, and the shot on the TV was not changing. I continued school and, just as I picked up my book, another plane flew into the other tower. Freak accident? It was confirmed there was no way that was a possible conclusion. It was apparent this was a terrorist attack. Being 12 years old and not quite sure what a terrorist was, or why someone would choose to crash into a building I had never heard of seemed stupid to me, but I could not help but stare. I could not helping being mystified about this whole incident. Was this actually happening? Did people really ruin my gorgeous, worry-free day because their twisted religion led them to believe God wanted them to do this? So many questions flooded through my head, but I was not quite sure how to ask them. Did anyone else even know the answers to my questions? Perhaps one day they might have an educated answer, but not now. It was too soon. All I could do was continue watching, speechless. It did not matter now if the same shot was on the TV, or that the news anchor kept repeating himself to avoid silence, school could wait. At that time, school did not feel as important as it did 20 minutes earlier. Children were losing their mothers and fathers without even knowing it. Men and women would later be staring at the charred faces of their spouses, hardly able to recognize the cheeks they caressed, the lips they kissed, and the ears they whispered “I love you,” into. Parents would sob as they put up missing posters, wondering if they would ever see their children again. Who was I to care if school took me a little longer one day, when children across the country would be having to make up for school because they missed days of school to attend the funerals of their loved ones.

Shortly thereafter the Pentagon was hit, followed by a crash in a Pennsylvania field. It was too unreal. I could not watch any longer. I retreated to my room to journal about all that had happened. I had to write down my feelings, my head just could not take that much confusion. The rest of the day is a blur to me. I am not sure what I did as the day progressed. I possibly did school, or perhaps I just sat around wondering what would be next and contemplating how safe I was in America. I do know that God spared my life that day and that it is definitely by God’s grace that I was not one of the thousands to die, or one of the several thousands to lose someone I loved.

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