Friday, September 10, 2010

Remembering 9-11, 9 years later

September 11, 2001 is a day that changed everything.  An event that will forever be remembered by those of us who witnessed the video footage, and those who lost someone on that dark day.  I remember the way it impacted me, so I figured I'd share it with whomever reads this.

I had just started my junior year of High School two weeks before September 11, and I woke up at 5:45 AM to get in the shower, and get ready for school.  I looked at myself in the mirror, and felt a tickle in my throat.  I also had a headache, so I used these ailments as an excuse to stay home from school.  Since I got good grades, and stayed out of trouble most of the time, my Mom let me stay home, so I crawled back into bed.  I grabbed my remote, and decided to watch a little television, before taking another trip to slumber land.

I flipped around the dial, and stumbled upon the news.  It was right after the first plane crashed into the World Trade Center, and the news treated it as if it wasn't a big deal.  They even went back to their regular programming.  I was a bit confused as to why a plane was flying into a giant skyscraper, but since the news blew it off, I did too, and I went back to sleep.

I woke up around 9:30 AM and turned back on the television to watch a Family Matters rerun, when it was preempted by the news.  This time the report was a second plane hit the World Trade Center, killing many.  The air was full of smoke, and chaos was all over New York.  Bodies fell from the giant building, Firefighters were trying to prevent the fire from spreading.  I couldn't believe what i was seeing.  It was like something out of Hollywood.

As more news and information came forward, we learned it was an effort of Islamic extremists.  I became enraged as footage of Tehran, Iran showed people dancing in the streets, celebrating the deaths of thousands of Americans.  People from all countries of the world perished in that horrific attack, not just Americans. Celebrating the deaths of thousands of individuals is psychotic, no matter where your from.

It was as if the entire world stopped.  Television was wall-to-wall news coverage.  Radio stations stopped playing music, there were no children playing outside, no smiles or laughter to be found anywhere.  Everyone didn't know whether to weep, or lash out, or just disconnect.  I don't think I spoke at all that night.  I just remembered laying in my room, trying to wrap my brain around what just happened.  It felt like these terrorists punched America right in the gut.  It was truly one of the worst days I can remember.

The next day at school was more of the same.  No joking around, no trivial banter about the latest gossip, just awkward silence.  No one knew what to do, or say, or how to act.  We didn't do anything involving education, we all sat in silence as the teacher asked for our thoughts on the subject.  What can you really say in that situation?  Words can't express the feelings that I had.

Much time has passed since September 11, 2001.  The thought of that day isn't something that we often think about, but its something we must never forget.  Tomorrow make sure you pay your respects to those who lost their lives because of this tragedy.  Think of the brave individuals who sacrificed their lives on United 93.  Think of the firefighters, and police who saved lives, and those who lost their lives.  Thank our military, and keep the victims on your minds and in your hearts.  I will never forget that day.

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