Remember

It’s one of those days that you’ll never forget. You’ll always remember exactly what you were doing when you heard the news. You’ll always remember how you felt, how you reacted, how everyone around you reacted. It was as if time stopped and you stepped back and took a picture or a video of the moment because you will never forget it.

I was 5 months pregnant with Gabe and had 7 month old Olivia at home. I was in the middle of teaching “Resource Math” for high schoolers who had some type of disability but were still very high functioning. I co-taught this particular class with a special education teacher so we were both walking around the room helping the kids with their work. All of a sudden another math teacher walks in the room and rushes over to me and whispers in my ear “A plane flew into the World Trade Center.” I remember thinking that was terrible and I couldn’t believe the pilot missed that building. I wondered what malfunction could have happened to make the pilot accidentally fly into one of the tallest buildings in America.

15 or so minutes later, the same teacher came back. She was pale and looked like she would throw up. I knew something was terribly wrong. She whispered in my ear again “Another plane flew into the other tower…and the pentagon…and there’s another one missing.” My heart sank. What was going on?

At this point the bell rang and simultaneously the buzz had hit at our high school and the kids demanded to know what was happening…as did we. We had TVs in our classrooms (except for me) so most of the teachers turned them on to watch the live coverage. Looking back, who knows if this was the right thing to do, but it felt right at the time. We were all scared and we needed information. I went across the hall to that teacher’s room and watched with the kids.

I remember sitting there watching the towers fall, hand on my swollen belly, thinking of my baby at home and sobbing. Right in front of the 30 students in the room with me and the other teacher. Many of the kids were crying as well. At that moment I just wanted to grab my things, grab my baby, make Matt come home from work, seal our doors and windows shut and live in a bubble for the rest of my life. How could this happen?

Four years later, I was due with Matthew and his due date was September 16th. I remember thinking over and over again, please don’t let him be born on September 11th. I just didn’t want that day associated with his birth. Maybe that was wrong of me, but it’s true. He luckily waited until the 13th. But today, as I’m getting ready to hang streamers and a birthday banner to celebrate Matthew’s day with family, I will also take a few moments to remember this day. To remember everyone who was lost, all that lost someone they loved, all of the heroes and to remember that life goes on and we celebrate those who we love.

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9 responses to “Remember

  1. i remember that day so vividly. i remember sitting in my german class at college….just numb. none of us could even grasp the reality of what had happened. this was AMERICA…..stuff like that didn’t happen here. and i had just been to NYC. i still have a picture that my mom took of me on a ferry….with the twin towers right next to me in the background. we will be remembering that day…..

    but just like you, my chandler was born on september 13 and we will also be celebrating his birthday today. even though this is a day for somber remembrance…..it’s also a day of celebration. because new lives are born and we take joy in that. cowardly acts will NOT stop us from being joyful and living life.

  2. I remember my mom always telling me that she remembered where she was when Kennedy was shot. As a kid, I thought that was strange. But now, after 9/11, I get it. Poonch was 3 mos and was down for a rare morning nap. I was FINALLY able to get in a nice, long shower and was loving it. I remember toweling my hair dry while watching the Today Show, standing there in disbelief as the second tower was hit. Hubs was traveling (by car), we were new to the town, and I felt very, very alone. Another weird detail I remember…I decided to go hang our flag outside, and as I went out to to it, two other neighbors were doing the same thing.

  3. I remember how very clear the sky was. I too wanted to just lock myself up in the house and never come back out. I called everyone I loved. I had to speak to them all. It was the most surreal thing I have lived through.

  4. I wasn’t even married yet, a young-ish, fairly new teacher when I heard the news in the staff room. Amazing how that one day, that one moment connects everyone around the world.

  5. I was only a few days old when Kennedy was shot. A few days after 9/11, I remember thinking “this is our generation’s Nov 22, 1963”.

    I remember where I was and who said what. But I mostly remember my deep sadness for the lives lost and their families left behind.

  6. I remember I was working at a downtown office building in Texas. I remember evacuating our building because we didn’t know what was going to happen. I remember looking at the coverage on the news and just shaking my head in bewilderment.

    I felt sadness for those who lost their lives on that day as their loved ones witnessed it.

  7. We share some very similar points regarding 9/11. I was pregnant with my twins when this happened. It was so emotional and overwhelming. Also, when I was pregnant with R, she was due on Oct 2. However, I had a lot of spotting etc at the beginning of Sept. I had to go on mini bed rest. In my mind, I was so determined that her b-day would not be 9/11. I just couldn’t stand the thought of it. She held out though like your Matthew!

  8. For my parents generation is was when JFK was assasinated. For us? 9/11 And like you, I’ll never forget, either. Such a day of tangled, twisted emotions. And confusion. Sifting through tragedy is so difficult. And like you, I was in the classroom, watching it all unfold and wanting desperately to be home with my sweet little girl and my wonderful husband.

  9. I remember the feeling all too well too. Every year it hits me the same way!

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