A serious moment.

I got home from dance class at 8:30pm on Tuesday, September 11th, 2001 and wrote down everything from that day.  I have done the same every year since.  Some of these entires were long and winded and some were short and thoughtful.  I’ve included all eleven as a way for me to reflect on this day.  Years 2002-2010 are just pieces of what I wrote, but 2001 and 2011 are the full reflections.


Today is September 11th, 2001.  This morning, two planes crashed into the World Trade Center and both buildings collapsed, killing thousands of people.  Another plane crashed into the Pentagon and another crashed in Pennsylvania, they think they were trying to keep the plane from killing more people.  I was in math class and there was an announcement over the loud speaker that there had been an attack in New York City.  Everyone was scared, we live close to New York and no one would tell us anything and kids kept getting called out of class.  In Science class Mrs. Hastings turned on the radio and let us listen and the broadcaster just kept saying that people had jumped out of the windows of the top floors.  Both towers fell and not everyone got out in time.  We heard that Bush was on a plane to New Orleans and I was mad that he was leaving in the middle of this.  I came home alone cause my mom and dad were still at work and Michael was still at school.  I was so scared that something would happen to me?  What if there are bombs?  I don’t think it’s over I think we could die.  I turned on the tv and watched the planes hit the towers over and over.  You could see people jump.  They interviewed a woman and she was covered in dust.  I still had dance class and when I went we kept talking about how 9/11 is 9-1-1.  Marissa wasn’t there.  Her dad works in one of the towers.  I came home and our neighbor still hasn’t heard from her husband.  He works a few blocks from the towers.  I wanted to write everything down because I know this is going to be important someday.  I’m so sad I don’t want this to be real.


Today is September 11th, 2002.  I can’t believe it’s been a whole year.  There are still flags everywhere.  I still cry a lot.  I went to auditions in the city this summer and every time the skyline looked empty.  We found out that Mr.  Zellman died that day.   I babysat Olivia sometimes.  I don’t have a lot to say because I don’t like thinking about it.  …Tonight we had a dance show to raise money for the families affected by 9/11.  I’m so happy I got to do something to help.  At school we had a moment of silence, but some kids in my class were laughing during it.  It pisses me off when people are disrespectful…


Today is September 11th, 2003.  …My parents are getting divorced.  They told me yesterday after play practice, but I knew before that because I heard my dad tell my mom he was leaving.  …I came home today and all of his stuff was gone…


Today is September 11th, 2004.  …I went with my youth group to a memorial service in Manhattan.  There were so many people there that we had to stand way in the back…. The people here are so strong, I can’t wait to live here someday.


Today is September 11th, 2005.  …This summer, Olivia Zellman had her birthday party at Color-Me-Mine where I work, so I was the party hostess.  Her mom has gotten remarried and they look happy.  …Today was a really normal day.  It’s like people are starting to forget…


Today is September 11th, 2006.  …For the fifth anniversary of the attacks, my school had a special assembly.  I performed with jazz choir and we sang God Bless America and I’ll Be Seeing You.  It was so hard not to cry during I’ll Be Seeing You, I kept thinking about all of the families who will never see their loved ones again…


Today is September 11th, 2007.  It’s weird not being home today.  I miss the city.  I felt kind of numb going to classes because it just seems like no one cares…  …Jen and I went to the memorial service in the chapel on campus and out of 6,000 students at Ithaca, we were two of three that showed up.  We sat in silence as the chaplain rang a bell once every ten seconds, once for every life that was lost on that day…


Today is September 11th, 2008.  …I spent today volunteering at the SPCA because otherwise I’d just mope around all day….  I want to give back and have this day actually mean something.


Today is September 11th, 2009.  It’s crazy how normal today has become.  I keep expecting something to happen, but it never does…


Today is September 11th, 2010.  …We need to stop hurting each other.  And I’m not just talking about killing.  Cheating, lying, stealing: we are breaking each other.  When did we get so selfish?


Today is September 11th, 2011.  It’s been ten years since I wrote that first journal entry, ten years since our entire country was shaken to its very core.  It upsets me that we don’t have this scale of remembrance every year.  It would’ve been easy for me to watch all the depressing documentaries today, but I decided I wanted to go out and make a difference.  My best friend Renee is working with Americorps in Paterson this year and she invited me to their day of service.  It was one of the most amazing experiences I’ve had in my life.  There were over 200 people that came out just to help rebuild some of the worst areas of Paterson.  The morning started out with a short program where the Congressman addressed us and we heard the story of a man who worked for Port Authority and was on the 63rd floor of Tower 1 when the plane hit.  I’ve never heard a survivor speak live before.  His story was truly amazing and really spoke to the bravery and selflessness of people on that day.  After the speeches, we went to the Charter School to help the kids paint a mural and plant a memorial garden.  I finally feel like I’m doing something to honor those who had to give the ultimate sacrifice.  I’ve made a pledge to perform a day of service every year on September 11th.





One thought on “A serious moment.

  1. I LOVE that you shared this. I think as someone that didn’t know anyone there, or even anyone that was physically in/near the city during that time, it’s more difficult for me to understand on a personal level how difficult this whole thing was and remains. Of course I understand just from being a part of the country but it’s so different to have seen the buildings, or known someone there.

    Thank you for sharing!

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