Strange as it may seem, this life is based on a true story." - Ashleigh Brilliant
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Thursday, September 11, 2003
You can't let today pass without, at least, a nod at what it's the anniversary of. I've got a few things to say on it; some people will disagree with me, I'm sure...but these are my 9-11 thoughts.
It's akin to the J.F.K. assassination - everyone remembers where they were when they heard. On September 11, 2001 I was at work. There was some buzz around the office about a plane hitting the World Trade Center - a retired Naval officer told us, on such a clear day, such a thing could not be an accident. Then someone came running in to say that a second plane had hit. Everyone was in shock. Next thing you knew, people were on the phone, radios were on, and we were calling out to each other things we learned. No one was working. Some administrators had TV's in their offices, and people were crowded in and watching them. A group of women were in a back room, holding hands and praying...and crying. There was a collective silence in the room when we heard each of the towers fell...the slow dawning of all the people on the ground around it. The full scope of it was beginning to be understood. We learned, during the chaos, that the planes were passenger planes and it was terrifying. Later that day the lights went out in our building and a pregnant woman passed out and had to be taken away in an ambulance. When I got home, I got drunk on a bottle of red wine. My computer was down and I had no TV back then, so I didn't see any of the actual footage for a few days. The first time I saw it was two days later, on a business trip to Shreveport. I turned on the television in my hotel room, and saw for the first time all of the footage in vivid color.
After a few weeks, I turned the television off. I just couldn't watch it anymore. It was depressing and sad, but time to move on. My Mom and sis stayed glued to the tube and watched every memorial, survivor story, and show on it. I'd drop by to visit and find them crying in front of the TV weeks after 9/11. I told them to stop...they were so depressed it wasn't even funny. Eventually, even they had to stop watching...and go on.
So that's my 9/11 story. Where were you?
As for September 11, 2003, I am ready to see life going on. I watched this amazing special on the Discovery Channel the other night about all the plans for the rebuilding of Ground Zero. It's going to be amazing...including two towers that will reflect the sun's light in a special way exactly on September 11 and at the exact time of the day the planes hit (think of it like a sun-dial). If you haven't, you should check out all of the plans that they have for the area. It's going to be pretty awesome.
This morning my office is holding a memorial service in honor of the date. I don't want to go. I went to the one year anniversary memorial service - that was appropriate. It was huge and terribly sad. I cried - everyone cried. Two years later, I am ready to move on. I remember what happened, I said a prayer for those that died and those that lost, and I'll light a candle in remembrance when I get home tonight. That's how I'd like to honor them. I don't want to go to another terribly heart-wrenching memorial service, see all of the pictures again and listen to the sad songs. It's depressing. That may seem wrong and cold, but it's how I feel. Of course I'd feel differently if I'd lost someone that day. But I didn't. And while I feel for those that did - I'd like to think over-blown memorial services aren't going to be held every year on this date. We need to look past that awful day and up towards the future. We should never forget - but we also shouldn't dwell on the pain and suffering. That's just how I feel. I may be wrong, but I stand by it.