Monday, September 11

I Remember

New makeup – that’s what was on my mind the morning of September 11, 2001. As I took a shower that morning, I was thinking about what I might purchase from a neighbor who recently became a cosmetics consultant. Chuck was at a conference in Baltimore and I didn’t have a class until the afternoon. I got out of the shower and realized that I didn’t turn off the television in the living room. As I walked toward the TV to turn it off, I saw Matt Lauer and Katie Couric talking about a terrible accident. A passenger plane had flown into the World Trade Center. At that very moment, I watched as a second plane flew into the other tower. I was in disbelief. Matt and Katie were in disbelief. I don’t remember how long I stood in front of the TV in my towel trying to make sense of what I was watching. Chuck was in meetings in Baltimore, but I knew that I had to reach him to tell him what was happening. I called just as he was leaving a meeting. I told him to get to a television because planes were flying into buildings in New York.

My neighbor called a few minutes later and asked if I still wanted her to come over. I didn’t want to be alone, so I asked her to come by even if we didn’t look at her cosmetics. I spent the rest of the day watching television, crying and praying in between talking to Chuck on the phone as he tried to figure out how he would get home.

What I remember most from that day is my disbelief. It was so hard for me to grasp that I was watching this horror unfold in the United States. I still find it hard to believe that our country was attacked. I cannot imagine the grief felt by those who lost friends and family as a result of the attack. I do not personally know anyone who perished, but I had an overwhelming feeling of loss. Even though the thought of being attacked again is frightening, I refuse to live in fear.

I will never forget how I felt that day and in the days that followed as I tried to get back to “normal.” I will never forget how good it felt to wrap my arms around my husband when he got home after he traveled half way across the country in a rental car.

I will always remember. What I saw, how I felt and the unselfish, unplanned sacrifices of so many will forever be vivid memories.