Wednesday, September 11, 2013
I still remember the day of 9/11/01 like majority of Americans. I was much younger, only 11. I remember walking into my history class, where my teacher always had the radio on, but that day she turned it off. She stood in front of her desk and asked us if anyone knew what was going on. One boy raised his hand and said that a plane had crashed into a building in New York. My teacher then proceeded to explain what happened and many students were picked up by their parents throughout the day.
After school, I remember my parents were sad for the people in New York and worried that something like that might happen where we lived. My dad worked in power and chemical plants and if a plane crashed or explosion happened in that area it would cause tons of death and sickness to not only those in the plants but also the surrounding areas because of all chemicals.
When I was 16 my mom and I visited New York City on a vacation and we went to see Ground Zero. At the time they had not decided what to do, whether they would rebuild or not, so it was just a giant hole. It was strange being at a location of a tragedy I had only seen in pictures or on TV. Many of the buildings surrounding Ground Zero still had plastic sheets over them because they were damaged and not in use, but they had not be taken down or fixed yet. Being there made it feel like even though it had been several years and things were getting better, not everything was fixed yet.
As I have gotten older I have realized the seriousness and importance of that day. I will never be able to understand the heartache that it caused so many people as they watched people die in front of them, lost their family and friends, and saw part of their city crumble from their windows.
I also know, that even though that day brought a lot of sadness and hard times, it also brought a nation together and every year when 9/11 rolls around I feel that it does the same all over again.
I also love reading stories of people who were there, who experienced it, and who witnessed and participated in helping others. One of my favorite authors, Meg Cabot, wrote this blog post about her experience and it is incredibly touching. http://www.megcabot.com/2013/09/911-post/
Be kind today and every day.