It has been 10 years.
Like millions of others I remember exactly where I was when I heard the news. I was in a Junior Kindergarten classroom the entire morning. Like the children in my charge, I was totally oblivious to the events which would change the world, oblivious until about 11:30 a.m. when the first parent arrived to pick up their child. I remember exactly the look on her face when she asked me if I had heard the news. She looked like she had exciting news to tell but not sure how to tell it. I laughed and so said “no, what’s up? Are you pregnant?” She didn’t laugh.
She went on to tell me planes were missing all over the US and some were crashing into buildings. She told me things I could not understand. I thought she must have the story all confused. As she left with her young daughter she said “the world as we know it has changed forever.” I was left speechless standing in a room of four years totally confused. I was not clear exactly what she was talking about but I was sure she was over reacting. What she was saying was just not possible. I was wrong.
A half hour later when all of the children had been picked up and hugged a little tighter by their parents I was finally able to go to the staff room where CNN had been playing all morning. At the time I was upset no one on staff had taken the time to come to my isolated kindergarten room to tell me this news prior to lunch time. Ten years later, I realize it was just as well. I had a few hours longer than the rest of the world to live in my bubble where innocent people are protected and safe from the fear of terrorists.
While I admire the spirit of the Americans who have valiantly carried on with their lives I do wonder if Bin Laden has actually won. He may have been taken out by Navy Seals, al qaeda may be in disarray, but his goal to destroy the United States economy and ultimately their way of life may be closer to reality. Along with the economic concerns facing the United States, it is becoming Un-United. With the growth of “The Tea Party”, the aim of politicians to win, over the need for the country to win, might ultimately be a greater blow to the country than any crazy terrorist could ever accomplish.
While the horror of 9-11 is something I never wish to witness again, can we ever get back those days following the attack when Americans, regardless of race, faith or political stripe, held and supported each other, strong in the belief they are the lucky ones to live in a free country?
Where were you before the world we as we knew it changed forever?