Still. 9/11

It’s that lump in my throat, that catch in my breath at the mention of “September 11th”.  Still.  All these many years later.  It’s frozen.  That pit, that fear.  Still.911

I can see it as if it were yesterday.  As if I’m still standing in the bedroom getting ready for work with my 16 month old in the next room & seeing that plane, hearing the fear in the reporters voice, the silence of not understanding or knowing what to even report. Still.

There are moments.  These moments.  We never ever forget.  These are public moments. Collective flashes of time that everyone remembers.  If you were alive on September 11, 2001 & living in America – you know.  It’s not unlike the JFK assassination or Pearl Harbor of generations before.  It’s the photograph & the video that we all share.  It was in our collective cry, grief, fear, and outrage.  And we felt it all together.  And we still feel it.  Still.

It’s different now.  There’s nearly an entire generation that doesn’t remember, doesn’t really know.  They have the book knowledge of it, but not the emotional memory.  They don’t know the instant that the world changed. When it crumbled.  We {America} were attacked.  In our house.  On our soil.  Not since Pearl Harbor.  Not on our main land.  And it broke something.  At least it broke something in me.  A security, no matter how false, was ripped away.  They could come here.  They could kill us here.  They could bring their hatred to us.  We were no longer safe.  Are no longer completely safe.  Still.

Is this how my grandparents felt?  I couldn’t understand the importance of Pearl Harbor, couldn’t fathom why it was such a big deal.  Yet when they spoke, there was a catch in their voice.  They looked back into their thoughts to remember.  Is this how my dad felt when I asked him thousands of time where he was when JFK was shot?  And then stood amazed that he remembered every detail.  Those moments.  This moment.  Etched forever me,  in us.  Stealing a little something away.  Still.

I will remember.  I cannot forget.  Ever.  I will remember the lives lost, the innocence taken, the anger, the fear, the loss.  I will remember because the next generation cannot remember but still must know.  Must see.  Must hear.  We must tell the story and remember the day if for no other reason than to honor those who were lost and those who were left.  I hate to remember.  To relive that day.  But I must always remember.  Still

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