...Samantha was a morning Kindergartner, and Drew was a baby. Our morning ritual at the time was that when Samantha woke up she would come in my room and watch "Arthur" until I got up with Drew. This morning had started out like all the others, except that when Samantha came in to turn on the TV she had to fiddle to get it on the right channel, and spent enough time pausing on channel 9 for me to hear Katie Couric announce that another plane had just crashed into the World Trade Center. Another plane? I bolted up in my bed and ordered Samantha to leave it there.
That's when I first heard.
A few weeks later I felt encouraged to write down my thoughts at that time; here are some of them:
* One of the first things I did was call my sister whose husband worked in downtown NYC. To my relief, he was involved in off-site meetings that day, but they were seriously worried about many of their friends. After informing me of his safety she had to go - her phone was ringing off the hook.
* I kept Samantha home from school that morning, unsure of what the day would bring. Was it over yet? I heard of a crash in the middle of Pennsylvania - we all assumed a correlation, but had no details to confirm it. Samantha was angry with me for missing school after she found out that she had missed making sheep with cotton. She came home wondering if all people who fly planes are bad guys.
* I wondered if we would go to war. I speculated about Cory losing his job. I thought about my nephew who had just left for a 2-year church mission in Brazil and wondered if he would have to come back to fight in a war. I remember looking around my house at all of our belongings and thinking, "this is just stuff".
* I felt like a snob. I became increasingly aware of how we must have looked to other countries who already lived this kind of reality EVERY SINGLE DAY. Like a bully who suddenly meets his match or a philanthropist who suddenly loses everything. I decided I didn't like being on the other side.
* Albeit in an unfortunate way, I felt like America got her patriotism back. Flags flew everywhere from small towns to downtown office buildings and people were generally nicer to each other.
* Feeling completely vulnerable and helpless, I tried to focus on having faith. Faith that God would keep his promises. Faith that what He says is true, and that good will ultimately triumph over evil.
Six years later, I'm still trying to focus on that.