Friday, September 11, 2009

9/11


I can recall an episode of My So-Called Life in which Angela says, "Grown ups like to tell you where they were when President Kennedy was shot, which they all know to the exact second. Which makes me almost jealous, like I should have something important enough to know where I was when it happened... but I don't yet. And the fact that it was a better time then, and people knew what they were supposed to do and how to make the world better, now nobody knows anything. We know who's popular or that social studies is boring, or that Brian always has stomach trouble, but nobody knows anything important. Instead of changing the world people sit in class and write notes about other people."

I remember having the same feeling that Angela described, but when the events of 9/11 occurred, I wished no one would have to experience the feelings and repercussion of such a tragedy. And like all of our parents and grandparents who can remember to the exact second where they were when Kennedy was shot, I will never forget where I was and how I felt almost exactly eight years ago today. I didn't go to school, I just sat with my mom and watched the news all day. It was horrific. The footage of the towers being hit, of the civilians and firefighters in the midst of it all, all of it just made me incredibly sad for all of those thousands of people who lost their lives and for their loved ones and for those who are, still to this day, traumatized by that experience.

After I got home late last night I started watching footage of the attacks, and after listening to a recorded conversation of a man in one of the towers minutes before it fell, I just broke down. What breaks my heart is when the operator tells him they're trying to get to him, he responds with, "It doesn't feel like it man, I got young kids", when he repeats that he and the other man he's with are "not ready to die", and finally the sound of rumbling and his voice crying out "OH GOD! OH..." and suddenly cuts off.

It's a reminder that our lives are so precious and so fragile and that at any moment we can suddenly be gone, like a vapor. I am praying for all of those countless lives affected by the tragedies of that day.

The full conversation:



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