Thursday, September 11, 2008


Has it really been seven years? I can remember like it was yesterday. Hubby and I were taking the kids to Mother's Day Out and then going to work. I was pregnant with Amy.

When we got back in the car, the news was talking about a plane running into the World Trade Center tower. It was so unfathomable to me, I thought for sure it was a sick disc jockey trying to get attention.

The more I heard, the more it sounded real. I got a really bad feeling in the pit of my stomach. Once we turned the channel and confirmed it was an actual event that was happening, I called dad at the church right away. He needed to know! There would be people showing up at the church just to be comforted.

When I spoke with him, he already knew. We both spoke in stunned, hushed tones. Even in the half-knowledge of what was going on that day, we understood the gravity of the situation and the need to be reverent and prayerful.

Hubby and I watched every minute of every bit of footage that could be splashed up on our television screen. Each time, the news people sensationalized the tragedy just a little more, making sure the home viewers could see the people jumping off buildings and out of windows to plummet to their deaths.

We watched as each tower fell in a puff of gray smoke and ashes. We worried about all the people. How could anyone survive? What kind of person does this? What was the government doing? Were our President and his cabinet safe? What was next?

Hubby and I sat in stunned silence. We wondered if we should pick up Keith and Emma and get them home. Rumors flew that Knoxville was a target and Atlanta was next. There was a sense of panic and confusion.

I cried. What were we doing bringing another life into this messed up, crazy world. If we went into war and we died, what would my baby be like in Heaven?

All I wanted was to gather up my children and my family and hide away. Where was God in all of this? Surely He must be mourning the wastefulness of all of this. And He must hurt to see His children in such pain.

The radio continued to talk of heroes and tragedy. The television had every analyst in the free world trying to decide what the meaning of all this was. The President looked tired. But he was strong. He spoke of safety, retaliation and prayers.

Finally one night, Keith crawled up on my lap. His big brown eyes searched mine.


"Yes, darling?" I asked, holding him tightly.

"Can we please stop watching the buildings fall on the people?"

It was like a slap in the face. My child's perspective made my stomach do flips.

We immediately snapped the television off. We haven't turned it on much sense, either.

We listened to the radio when the kids weren't around and learned that many of the people responsible were found. We heard from friends and family that were from that area. The world slowly shifted back to a safer place.

But it would never be the same. The hysteria that followed made us wonder if there was any place in the world that would ever feel safe again.

Today it has been seven years. Amy, who was still in my belly seven years ago, is obvious about her concern and compassion over what happened before she was even born.

Keith still remembers the "buildings falling on the people." Emma was so young she doesn't remember much. But, even so, she is very reverent about the subject.

I hope we will never have to see anything even remotely like this again.

I wonder if there's a next time if we will be able to avoid a World War? I think many Americans would have been in favor of an all-out war. But too many people couldn't stomach the idea of killing people for no other reason than where they live and with whom they associate.

Fortunately, we have people on both sides of the fence. One side keeps us safe the other keeps us sane.

Hopefully, together we can build a better tomorrow for Keith, Emma and Amy, their friends and their children.

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