I was only five years old. I was sick that day, so I wasn’t going to school. I was still in bed. I stared at the ceiling, waiting for my mother who told me she’d be right back with a glass of water for my sore throat. It was taking her a long time. I assumed she was tending to my brother, who was four months old then. I remember I felt a little annoyed that she hadn’t come back yet, so I got out of bed and walked down the stairs in my yellow footie pajamas. When I entered the living room, I saw baby David on his belly on the floor, cooing happily, and my mother sitting inches away from the tv with her hand over her mouth.
I saw a lot of smoke coming from a building on the tv. It didn’t quite scare me, because I was young. What scared me was the way my mother was sitting, staring in a horrified manner. I knew something horrible had just happened, and I began to feel sicker.
My sickened belly only got worse as she and I watched the second plane hit the tower. My mother let out a shriek, making me jump. I stared at the tv, wondering what in the world was going on. Why had those airplanes crashed into a building? People must be hurt after that. Where was this all happening? I wanted my father to be home.
My mother turned around and saw me standing there with wide eyes and a gaping mouth, and pulled me into her arms to hug me. I felt her body shaking and trembling.
It was a relief when my father came home half an hour later. I ran into his arms and told him, “Airplanes had an accident, Daddy. People died.” He was crying and said, “I know, honey, I’m sorry you had to see that.” My parents didn’t move from in front of the tv for hours. I left the room to play by myself so I didn’t have to see their scared faces. But the images I had seen were still clear in my mind.