It's been 10 years. I had know idea how that day would effect the rest of my life. Like all of us, I remember exactly where I was as I watched the 2nd plane hit. I remember exactly who I was with as we watched the towers collapse into a sea of black smoke. I remember my male classmates pledging to join the armed forces if that was necessary. I remember when 2 of those boys were deployed, and more importantly when they returned home safely. I remember the sinking feeling in my stomach upon learning that my dad was in New York doing business with Morgan Stanley and my uncle was flying a plane that had just taken off from Washington Reagan. I remember bursting into tears in front of my classmates when I finally got a hold of my step mom and she told me that my dad and my uncle were both safe. Everything about that day is still crystal clear, 10 years later.
I am one of those people who watches all of the documentaries every September 11th. I can't help it. I cry and remember, and I get angry. Angry for those who lost loved ones and angry at those who caused this pain. I have pride in my country and the amazing responders who risked and lost their lives. I am proud of how we came together so quickly yet saddened by how quickly we divided again. I have hope that we can come together again, without a terrible tragedy as a reason.
Today was harder than the last 9 anniversaries for me. Today, Bug saw footage of the attacks and started asking questions. How do you explain to a 5 year old that there are evil people in the world that want to hurt us for no reason? How do you explain that people died that day? How do you explain that real life heroes aren't like Batman or Superman and don't have super powers? How do you explain to a 5 year old that real heroes sometimes give their life in order to save others? Fortunately a commercial for an awesome new toy came on and we didn't have to answer his questions, but someday we will. When I was sitting in my Government Econ class 10 years ago today I knew my life would change, but I never considered how I would teach my children this piece of American history. I hope I can rise to the challenge. I hope my children never have to experience the heartache of watching such a tragedy unfold. I hope the wars that we are fighting now both in the middle east and at home will lead to a safer and more stable life for my children and grandchildren. I have hope. I have pride. I remember.