I remember watching the Today show ten years ago.
I was 38 years old. The Boy had just started first grade and The Princess was in pre-school. Mr. Wonderful was home - thank goodness - with a ruptured eardrum.
There was a breaking news story...an airplane had just crashed into the World Trade Center...
I watched in horror.
Mr. Wonderful had taken the kids to school so that I could get ready for a baby shower later that morning. He called to see if I needed anything from the store.
I was describing to him what I was seeing on the television...He asked me what kind of plane it was. I remember telling him no one was sure yet...
I remember describing the scene to him - the huge hole in the middle of the building, and the black smoke billowing out....
And then I saw the other plane.
I gasped...I recognized that logo on the tail immediately...
"Oh my God! That's a United plane!"
I watched in disbelief...
...and I cried.
My group of friends all went to the baby shower - we really weren't sure what was going on, or what we should do. We were glued to the television and the news reports and to our cell phones. We were all crying and horrified and in shock.
When the third airplane hit the Pentagon, and the fourth crashed in Pennsylvania, we all knew.
We knew that something unimaginable had happened. And we knew that our world had changed.
Mr. best friend and I went to the little chapel at the church. We slipped inside, knelt down and prayed with tears sliding down our faces. We hugged each other and cried more.
And then we left to collect our children from school. We didn't know what else to do and we wanted our children near us. The Princess doesn't really remember that day. She was only 4, after all. But The Boy was in first grade. He knew something had happened. He was scared.
Mr. Wonderful and I tried to explain in simple terms what we didn't even understand ourselves. The Boy wanted to know why the bad men had attacked us and why they hated us. And he wanted to know if it would happen again. We tried to assure and comfort him, even as we wondered those same things ourselves.
On September 11, 2001 our world changed. As adults, we remember our lives as before 9/11 and after 9/11. We all remember exactly what we were doing that day. We remember every detail of how we learned about the attacks and about how that day impacted us. Some of us lost loved ones that day. Some of us were traveling at the time and had a difficult time getting home. Many of my friends work, as flight attendants and pilots, for airlines. Their lives were changed forever. Work rules changed. The way they looked at passengers changed. For my husband and everyone at his company, the events of September 11 led to a 50% cut in pay, which is still in effect to this day. All of us witnessed a catastrophe which changed our lives forever.
We lost our innocence.
I remember. Oh yes, I remember...