September 11, 2001 was a scary day. We all remember it, and if you don't, there are countless images and news articles you can read about it. I asked the boys if in their second and third grade classes, they talked about what happened on 9/11. They said no, but they know that 9/11 is "the day some bad guys flew some planes into the twin towers, and a lot of people died." Yup, that pretty much sums up the day.
A lot has changed since that day. Scott and I went from living in Dayton, OH to Washington, DC to Wichita, KS. We freed ourselves from two crazy cats but added two crazy boys to our family.
I went from full time work, to stay at home mom to working part time. A silver minivan has replaced our sporty red convertible Miata. Our house is full of Legos, and conversations revolve around Star Wars, soccer and the Hardy Boys.
things haven't changed: Scott still grills the best steaks ever, and I
still hate to clean.
But the memories of that day remain.
Some are fading, some are still vivid. I was working as
Communications Director for the Dayton Art Institute in Dayton, home to Wright Patterson Air Force base, one of the largest Air Force bases in the US. Scott was active duty Air Force, working on base.
I can hear the phone recording “all circuits are busy…” when I tried to get a hold of Scott. No one could call out or in to the base. Cell phone lines were jammed
as well, with everyone in America trying to get a hold of loved ones and
figure out what was going on. Scott and I finally connected hours later, and he
was put on 48 hours notice for deployment. Scott's department was required to man their office
24/7. He also updated his will, and went over all the financials and
important stuff I needed to know in case he got deployed and something
happened to him. Morbid, yes, but it needed to be done.
I can even recall what I was wearing that day: my favorite Ann Taylor black shirt dress with 3/4 length sleeves, buttons down the front and belted waist, and black knee high boots. Isn't it strange the things we remember?
Sometimes I'll be watching a movie or TV show made prior to 2001, and I'll catch a glimpse of the twin towers. The image that comes to mind is that of the towers burning, then collapsing. I don't like that memory at all.
Our safe little world changed that day. In the weeks and months following, we worried about letters laced with anthrax being mailed to media outlets and Legislators. Airline security was
ramped up and now passengers were required to remove their shoes when
going through airport security. And the US formed the Department of Homeland Security whose main role was to protect us from terrorists.