Tuesday, September 13, 2011

9/11....a few days later

I tried to write something for 9/11 but I just couldn't do it.

It seemed that everywhere I looked, I was hit in the face with the events 10 years ago.

It seems so long ago but at the same time, only yesterday.

Everything I wanted to write didn't seem right.  Now, a few days later, I figure I'll put it in words.

Even though I'm a CA girl, I spent a lot of time in New York.  NYC is my city.  I love it almost as much as I love my son.  There are days when I believe I should still be there but knowing for some reason, I'm right where I should be.

I knew people in those buildings.  I know people who got out and some who didn't.  Some who were supposed to be in there but weren't, some who shouldn't have been there but were.

Friends who worked on a level low enough that allowed them to escape.  Hearing their stories scares the hell out of me.  If I had stayed in New York all those years ago, I could have been in those buildings.  A company I wanted to work for was in one of those buildings.

In college, I got to know a lot of the fireman on Long Island.  Great guys, every one of them.  Both volunteer and paid fireman.  Some of them were the first to respond that day.  I can't thank them today because they aren't here for me to thank.

I didn't turn on the television that day.  I couldn't.  I couldn't force myself to watch everything over again and I wasn't in the mood to 'celebrate' anything.  I spent time with family and friends knowing that any day could be the last time I see them.  I celebrated life on 9/11.  I celebrated the few friends who were lucky enough to make it out that day.  I celebrated the family I have that made it safely home from the city that day.

I can't listen to the 911 calls or the calls home to families letting them know they love them.  I can't do it. I won't do it.

I remember them every time I look at my pictures of NYC with and without the towers.  My city has changed.

A side story: I took my husband to New York for the first time in April 2001.  He'd never been so I got to show him as much of it as I could in the 2 days we had.  I took him down to Wall St and gave him the option of seeing the Stock Exchange or the Twin Towers.  Since we did the Empire State Building the day before, he opted out of another skyscraper.  He chose the Stock Exchange.  I'm sad that he didn't get to see the view from there.  I'm sorry he didn't get to stand in those glass windows and get a view of the world around us.  The last time I had been up there was 1988.  I wish I had taken the time to go up there more often but I was so focused on what goes on at ground level that I forget about the fantastic views.

I also didn't share any of this with my son.  He's 4.  He still thinks the world is this fun place, his playground.  I can't jade his view of that just yet.  Maybe in a couple of years, but not today.  Not this year.  I don't want him to ever have to deal with that.  I was 9 when the Challenger exploded and that jaded me.  I was watching live at school that day, along with my friends.  Your little world just stops and it seems like nothing anyone says can change how you view the world.  I know that wasn't a terrorist activity but it was still life changing.  I lost some of my innocence that day.  I want my son to stay innocent a little longer.

1 comment:

  1. I know what you mean, i think everyone in the world remembers this day like it was yesterday. I do, i still do, i was at work when it happened and as we had reuter screens we heard it as soon as it happened. it is still hard to hear all the stories on TV and i can imagine not everyone is ready for that.