There are certain events in our lives that mark us. That change how we are. That change how we think... that mature us too quickly... and make us wonder...
I had not been born when President Kennedy had been assassinated.
Two days before I was born Martin Luther King, Jr. had been killed.
But I do remember where I was when I heard about
The Challenger crash in 1986
Oklahoma City Bombing in 1995
Columbine in 1999
and the World Trade Centers.
I was asleep when the first plane hit. I woke up and Anthony had the television on... I watched in disbelief as over and over and over again the first plane hit the building. I remember thinking that there must not have been anyone on board. There couldn't be. That plane had to be empty.
And then it came. The second plane. Well, I just thought they were replaying the first plane. No, a second plane. And within a few minutes someone at the Pentagon saying they felt something. And I thought "What a reactionary... nothing could happen to the Pentagon." On and on it went.
I went to Bible Study that Tuesday morning. I thought we would all be taking the morning to pray. But it was business as usual. I think we came together on Wednesday night to pray... You see living on the west coast... we weren't in the midst of it all. It took some time feel the aftershocks.
We were supposed to get on a plane on Friday, September 14th. Anthony's brother was to get married on the 15th. Anthony and Christopher were to be in the wedding. Could we get there? How about a train or could we drive? Not enough time at this point.
And on Friday the 14th quiet airports started to hum again. Yes, our flight was one of the first to take-off. But our parents begged us not to... not even for a wedding. They could not live with themselves if something happened to our flight. The unknowing. The fear.
We stayed home and grieved. Being away from family during good times and bad... is so very difficult. I remember Anthony's mom telling us that she asked that the wedding photographer not take a family photo... since not all of the family was there.
I had been to the top of the World Trade Center back in 1985. I used to work just minutes from the Pentagon. I would pass it each morning on the way to work. We still fly in and out of Dulles Airport on United Airlines.
It's not the same anymore. Christopher will never know of a world without 9/11. And even though he was too young to remember. He will never be able to forget.
We will never forget.