The 9/11 attack happened during my first year teaching at Winfield. The thing I will always remember about that day is that it was the day I felt the weight of being an adult for the first time. It hit me right between the eyes. I was forced to put aside my fear, anxiety, and sadness in order to reach out and comfort a room full of high school students who were looking to me for how to react. What a heavy experience to share with a room of young people, who at that time were not much younger than myself.
Visiting the 9/11 monument in New York last year was one of the most somber moments I have ever experienced. I recommend the experience to everyone... you NEED to go! Just to see the names of all the people who lost their lives that day... it was overwhelming! While we were there, I talked with some of the students about their own memories of the day.
They were so young then that they hardly remembered anything! I think what hit home the most for me was seeing the name of a woman carved into the fountain, followed by the words "and her unborn child." How senseless was that day! How sad!
The world has changed a whole lot since then. I can remember a time when I could wait for my loved ones at the airport gate, go to a Cardinals game without metal detectors, and generally felt safe everywhere I went.
It's odd that most of our students do not remember that world. I still believe that America is one of the best places in the world to live. I am so proud and grateful for the people who gave their lives on 9/11 and who still put their lives on the line every day to protect our country!
Some of those brave people are my family members and kids who sat my classroom not long ago.
I just am reminded on this day every year, more than any other, that we should be a little more grateful and appreciative of those things we hold dear.
Septeber 11, 2012
Todays author leading her Minstrals on location!