This shouldn’t surprise anyone that I chose this date in history in light of the 10-year anniversary that happens today. I am not going to review the events of the day–there is enough information out there for all of you. Instead, I will share my 9/11 story.
September 11, 2001, I went to work like any other day. I was living in Fort Worth, Texas at the time, and I taught at Temple Christian School. I was a music teacher, and I worked as the elementary secretary. All the normal things were going on that morning. Our administrator made the normal announcements. It was just an average day.
I remember being in the office entering attendance when our administrator came in and made the first announcement about some bomb–I think there was even some kind of rumor about a car bomb–hitting a building in New York. I only halfway understood because you know how it is when someone is making an intercom announcement and you are in the same room. I asked our nurse (the health room and elementary office were the same place) what had just been announced, and she told me what I thought I heard. I remember feeling pretty confused, so I turned to the internet. What I remember was the internet being absolutely jammed. All I got was an error message. I had never before nor never since seen such a jammed internet.
It was not long before our administrator came in and made the second announcement. He now spoke about airplanes. He spoke of the World Trade Center. I remember feeling saddened and shocked. I put my head in my hands. I wondered what on earth was going on. I also realized that it was nearly time to teach my first class. It was a group of second graders, and it seemed so strange to have to teach in light of what was going on in New York. We had been warned to not have the news on nor talk about the issues with the students.
I went to that class, and I remember the sweet children being so frightened. They said they were afraid that planes were headed our way and would crash into our school. I quelled their fears the best I could, and we sang songs. I couldn’t tell you what we sang. I turned off my brain for that half hour, and we had regular music class.
When I left that classroom, things were indeed changing. Parents had begun to pick up their children. I can’t remember when I heard about the Pentagon. Everything seems to run together. I still couldn’t get online. It was a good hour or hour and a half later, and the internet was still jammed. I remember I called my then husband to see if he had heard. He said that it was our next door neighbor who told him.
Shortly thereafter, our administrator decided to close the school early for that day. Since my then-husband was my ride home, I had to call him back. He said he would come and get me. All parents were called, and it was amazing how quickly the parents responded. We had no problem completely clearing the school out, and then we were free to go.
Right before all this, I finally got on the internet. Indeed, I can still recall the first pictures I saw of the disaster. I called our nurse to the computer, and we were both horrified by what we saw. I could hardly wait to get home and try to make some sense of what had happened.
Once home, I watched everything on TV like most of America did. I began to understand what had happened. I can remember calling everyone and talking with them about the horror. That Friday, I participated in the candlelight vigil that America was being called to to remember this horrible tragedy. I felt so helpless, but I was willing to do anything and everything I could.
My then-husband’s response to the entire situation was so strange. He longed to be a missionary in the country of Yemen, and we had even gone there on a missions trip a couple of years prior. This man to whom I was married had the strangest view. He didn’t see anything wrong with what the terrorists had done. He thought that America had blown everything out of proportion. It made sense for Muslims to attack America this way. We needed to reach out to these people in love and not retaliate. What?? Was he serious? I can remember being so upset by what he said. I was glad that he was not around as I watched the remembrance ceremonies.
In retrospect, I think this was the beginning of the end of our marriage. I was vocal in my support of America against the terrorists. He thought I was crazy for feeling this way. And he never spoke of 9/11 again.
That is my story, and all I can say is that even after 10 years, I can never get over what happened nor this this man’s response. I think this song sums everything up:
Update: Since I am updating this in memory of the twelfth anniversary of the terror attacks, let me say a couple of things in addition to this. I still get so angry when I think of my now ex-husband’s view on the 9/11 terror attack. And I have also seen and heard Alan Jackson perform the song live since I published this. It was amazing, to say the least, but there were even people in the crowd who “booed” him. I believe some were even uncomfortable, but I was so glad he sang it out! I will never forget this day as long as I live. It is emblazoned in my memory!Interested in subscribing to all my site's updates? Subscribe below!