Monday, September 11, 2006

How Life Changed

Five years ago. September 11, 2001. 8:30 a.m.

Hannah was just shy of 9 months old, and was still sleeping soundly. I was watching the Today Show on NBC at our house in Stockbridge, Georgia. Just before 9 a.m., they went to live coverage of the World Trade Center on fire. They speculated that a plane crashed into it. Just after 9:00 a.m., you could CLEARLY see a second plane crash into the second tower.

I became frantic. Scott was at the gym on Ft. Gillem. He was scheduled to play a funeral near our house, so the band told him to stay home till the funeral. He took advantage of the additional time off and went to work out. I tried to call him on his cell, but he either had it off, or was still working out and his phone was in his locker.

I called my friend Barbara H. She hadn't turned on the TV yet, and when she did, she was as shocked as I was. We got off the phone shortly after I called. I tried Scott again and again. I then called my sister at work. She had not heard anything, either. Someone from her office brought in a small TV so they could see the events unfolding.

Scott finally came home. He hadn't heard what had happened. He called his office to see if he needed to come in. No one knew anything about what had happened. No one seemed to know what to do! He was told to stay close to the phone, and to go to the funeral as scheduled. Scott called his mom, and while he was on the phone with his mother, the Pentagon was hit. Not long after that, we heard about the plane in Pennsylvania. First reports stated the plane crashed outside of Philadelphia; later reports said outside Pittsburgh. I worried...Scott's family all lived outside Pittsburgh!

SO many changes in our lives. The military changed, and with that, the way my husband had to work. The military posts were no longer "open to the public" and they had to change traffic patterns to keep cars from important buildings on posts.

I have a special group of moms in my life; we met on a message board on babycenter. We all had babies due in February of 2001. We were a tight-knit group from all over the U.S. One mom, Barb V., had worked in NYC before giving birth to her 2nd son. She worked in the financial district and had friends there. She lost several friends in the attacks of the WTC buildings.

Barb V., you're in my prayers today as I know you are going through hard times today. I am praying for the loss of your friends, and for the pain you feel.

Our group had a hard time with this. We had a mom who was Pakistani. There were some very hard feelings and very harsh posts and messages to our group. In the end, we managed to hold it together for a short while, but we eventually lost Ayesha due to the tension and the beliefs that were so different. The group is still in contact, for the most part. But the dynamics have changed. We've gone on to have more children, and our lives have gone on. But to this day, I break out in tears when I think about what happened, and how our country has changed.

Do you realize that there have been almost as many soldiers killed in the War on Terror as there were killed on that AWFUL day? Is it time now to end the fighting, before the numbers exceed the losses of that day? On September 11, 2001, we lost a total of 2,996 people to the attacks on the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and the plane crash in Shanksville, Pennsylvania. As of today, we have lost more than 2,600 American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan. Coalition losses are MUCH closer to the 2,996 lives lost on 9-11.

To all the families and friends who lost loved ones because of this terroristic act (both on 9-11 AND the ensuing war), my prayers are with you on this day, AND EVERY DAY. There is nothing that can be said or done that will erase these losses from your hearts, but you know that people all around the world will be praying for you always.


Sue said...

Beautiful post Linda, you brought tears to my eyes!!

Fern's mom said...

I've been thinking about all the mommies today. 9/11/01 changed our group in such a big way - as it changed all of the US. I think this illustrates that 9/11 changed not only the big things, but the little things as well, such as losing Ayesha's friendship. I think of her often and wish her well. I wonder if we got back in touch today, if we could work out our differences, given the changes in the world...

I just don't know.

Wonderfully written Linda. I couldn't have said it better (yet again).


Carmi said...

Thank you, Linda, for sharing this memory and lesson with us. You brought home, in searing relief, what it was - and is - like for so many of us.

Quick answer to your comment on my blog: I'd be honored to have you use my photo. If you wouldn't mind adding a photographer's credit with a link back to the source, I'd appreciate it very much.

Please let me know when it's up: I'll link to it from my blog as well.

Thanks so very much. I'm humbled.

Sandy said...

The loss of life is devestating. The loss of a way of life is equally as horrific. We lost so much more than 2,996 souls that day. We lost an innocence. We lost naviete. We lost a bit of progress we had made in tolerance. That saddens me as much as the death.

Grin said...

Linda, I'm so glad you told me about this post. Once again I find myself feeling bonded as I did that week.