9-11-11: I know I should write something poignant tonight. Something eloquent and profound, but nothing comes to mind. I've ready so many articles today I can't tell where their words end and mine begin. So...I decided to go back to what I started a few days ago. It's more stream of consciousness than poetic prose, but that's okay. The important thing is to document this anniversary in my own way and by doing so remember the men and women who lost their lives on September 11, 2001.
Ten years. In some ways it feels like a lifetime ago. Yet is also seems like yesterday. Feelings I thought were buried quickly resurface when I see news footage or read a survivor's account of that day.
Last year I blogged about where I was on 9-11. It was the story of an eighteen year old who didn't even know what the trade towers were, let alone what influence they held in the world. Today, I'm a twenty-eight year old who has visited Ground Zero three times, the Pentagon Memorial twice, and has yet to see Shanksville, PA. When I'm at a memorial site, it's like standing on hallowed ground -- so many lost their lives here.
Watching the footage is both cathartic and painful, yet I have to see it. Once again I question my historical interests and wonder why the topics are always morbid and war related. (think about it: WWII Germany, Holocaust, Vietnam, USMC, and now 9-11). However, I honestly believe the people who gave their lives deserve our honor and recognition, and in some small way, watching/reading their stories ensures their lives are not forgotten.
This year it's the Pentagon story that affects me. I have a personal connection now and an overactive imagination that recreates a scene of horror and heroism.
People say our world has changed forever. I believe it has. Security is everywhere: airports, Disneyland, concerts, sidewalks...so many reminders of what was and what is reality. Yet, I have to believe in the midst of the sadness we've changed for the better. In the days following 9-11 the American Spirit shone bright and clear. We felt American -- an indescribable emotion that for a time set us apart from the rest of the world.