It seems unreal to me that it was just 12 years ago that the United States was attacked by people filled with so much hatred. My thoughts and prayers are with those who still mourn the loss of friends and loved ones on that awful day.
Some people remember where they were when Kennedy was shot, or when Martin Luther King Jr. was killed.
For me, 9/11 was something that happened in my lifetime, and I remember almost every detail about how that day played out in my eyes.
We had only been living on the West Coast for about eight months, my husband was in the Navy. I had just started to wake up when my father-in-law called looking for my husband. I had no idea what was going on and he was relaying what he knew in a panic. I called every number I could to locate him, but all lines were busy, probably because everyone in the city was doing the same thing. With no other choice, I sat in shock, like the rest of the country, at the edge of my bed watching the events happen before my eyes.
I was newly pregnant with my first child, and my immediate thought was “What kind of world am I bringing a child into?” My family called to check on my husband and I, and I was frantic, trying to figure out where he was and if he was okay. The anchors kept saying there was chatter that the West Coast was a target as well, so I was left to imagine the worst.
It would be almost a month before I got to see him again.
Somehow, I moved and dressed myself, and in a daze, drove myself to work. Walking into the office, I found it was where I needed to be. There were so many of us that were military spouses, in the same predicament: military member deployed, no communication and scared. We hugged each other, we cried together and we supported each other. No work was done that day because we all sat in the lobby, still in shock.
One of our coworkers lost his sister that day, although at that time, he didn’t know it, yet.
We all know that the world changed that day. We lost our sense of security, and I’m not sure we have gotten it back completely. Or if we ever will. The nation’s resolve to rise from the hatred, to come together across party lines to stand together, was a proud moment. In a time of terrible sadness, I was prouder than I ever have to be an American. Through all of the chaos and madness, hope and pride…and determination, seemed to be the motivating factors to begin the healing process.
I’ve been to numerous sporting events throughout my life, and sung along to National Anthem and America the Beautiful. Those words never held the meaning that they hold for me today. Since that horrible day 12 years ago, when I hear these songs, my heart swells with such pride and I can’t fight the tears, nor can I sing through them.
I’m proud of my husband and his service to our country. I’m thankful to those who continue to serve, and their families who carry the load back home. I have nothing but respect for those who put their lives on the line everyday, the police officers, fire fighters, emergency responders, every single man and woman in a U.S. Military uniform. You are my heroes.
9/11 changed everything, and I pray that the victims and their families find peace. I pray that our country never again witness something so tragic, or anywhere else in the world for that matter. I pray that my children will never have to experience the hatred that we witnessed that day.