For the year 2001 I had decided to try something new and keep an electronic journal. I was a stay at home mom living in Silver Spring Maryland, just 20 minutes from downtown Washington DC. Here is my journal entry for September 11th, 2001:
Today is a day that will be forever remembered in World History, and I thought I definitely should write about my feelings of today. I dropped the kids off at school as I would any other day, and went to Giant to do some shopping. I came home, and immediately got a phone call from Carole, who sounded quite panicked. She asked if I had been watching TV, to which I answered no, and she told me to turn it on. Thus started a chain of events that I just can’t believe is happening in this Country. There was news on every channel. It turns out that a plane had crashed right into one of the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York. As the news was showing the coverage of this “accident”, all of a sudden, out of the sky another plane came smashing into the world trade center as the entire world watched it. Terrorists were attacking America. Very soon after that, a plane crashed into the pentagon in Washington DC. I was terrified at this point as I thought about what was happening. We were being attacked here near our home.
The FAA for the first time in History grounded all planes in the United States. Other countries did the same thing. Another plane crashed in a rural area of Pennsylvania. This was a plane that we later found out was also taken over by terrorists, and was heading back to Washington DC to perhaps take out the White House. The whole world came to a stand still as all federal buildings were closed. All museums, all sports cancelled, all the schools in our area closed. Less than an hour after the twin towers were hit, the first one came tumbling to the ground. It was a horrific sight.
I felt sick as the news reported that the fire and rescue workers that had gotten to the scene, and were desperately trying to help people out of the building were buried under thousands of pounds of rubble, adding to the already large amount of dead and injured people. I came to a horrible realization, that many people who were trying to get out of the building suffered a horrible death. One of the most heart wrenching scenes, was that of people jumping from the top of the Twin Towers. These were people who were trapped by fire. There were shots of people jumping holding hands, and I cried and cried thinking of the horror they were living through, and the awful death that they had no choice of. Then about 20 minutes later, the second tower collapsed. It was like watching a really horrible movie, but the thing was that it was really happening. And we were watching it happen live on TV. I have never felt so sick inside as I felt the awful truth that life in America, life on the earth, life will never ever be the same.
I was relieved as I got to the school to get the kids. I just wanted to have them close to me. I felt like the world was coming to an end. I called mom and dad who were in England. I found it hard to keep myself from panic, but for the good of my children, I restrained myself from crying as much as possible. I wanted them to feel safe, not terrified like the rest of us. When I picked them up from school, I explained to them that some “very bad men had crashed planes into some buildings, and that in order for everyone to be safe, they wanted the kids to go home with their parents.” I tried to keep it as brief as possible, yet let them know what was happening, as I was sure that they would see or hear it at some point, and I didn’t want someone else to be the ones to tell them. I just kept praying in my heart that we would all be safe, and that they would feel safe with us.
All activities were cancelled for this evening nationwide. They said that there were thousands of people working in the World Trade Center Twin Towers. They are hopeful that many people were able to escape, and it will be weeks before a death count will be available. Meanwhile, we are making sure that our kids do not watch TV, because the coverage of this event is on every channel, and it is graphic, and sickening. They have already cancelled school for tomorrow. They don’t know when flights will resume, and so we have no idea how long mom and dad are going to be out of the country.
Today is a dark day for the United States of America, and all countries of the world that are affected by terrorism. It is an evil thing. It is a nightmare for our children. Life will never be the same again. :(
Today, September 11, 2010, my thoughts and prayers are with the victims of the terrorist attacks and the families who lost their loved ones. I also am thankful for those who continue to fight for our freedom and give their lives for us. My prayers are also for them and their families.