I am young, I was even more young when this occurred. I remember I just started 1st grade. I was excited to start a new year at school and was settling in for whatever we had to do that day. Forgive me, as my memory from then on is a bit sketchy, next I remember is being called to the office. I thought this was highly strange. I had no doctor appointments or anything, but I did as I was told. Walking down the hallways to get to the main office, I discovered I wasn’t alone on my journey to the main office. I thought that was weird. I think I asked a kid why they were being sent they had no clue. I didn’t know what was happening but in a way I happy to go home.
Once reaching the office, I saw a bunch of other parents there including my mom. The office was packed. Parents talking and such. It was almost hard to hear. My sister was already at the office. My other mom got us out of school quick. Her emotions and all around ‘feel’ to her were distressed. It finally dawned on me something was wrong. I didn’t know what but it shook me down to my core. As we got in the car I asked what was wrong, my mom said something about the twin towers being hit. My sister and I knew it was bad and all I can remember after is what felt like the longest drive home. In reality, my house wasn’t far away from school 5 maybe 10 mins. My sis and I swear we saw some sort of odd plain in the sky. (I think we were just hyped up though.) When we got home, my other mom was in the couch watching the TV her face filled with grief. I didn’t watch.
I didn’t ask much and I couldn’t really comprehend what was going on. At the time, my small child mind just thought of it like a house that caught fire, or a car crash. I remember my parents talking about it and saying stuff that we may want to move. I gathered up some stuffed animals and puppets of mine in a yellow basket just in case if we did. (We didn’t have to. We live in New Jersey.)
In later hours, I remember begging one of my parents to take me out side so I could ride my tricycle. The one who took me out of school agreed to. I remember I was just about to leave my driveway when I heard the loud sound of a helicopter. My mom and I looked up at the sky a dark green army helicopter flew past. Maybe then, it gave more of hint as to how big the situation was. I can’t remember anything more after that. Not even in the days that followed.
I never asked much about it afterwards. It wasn’t till a few years after I found out a plane crashed the pentagon and one crashed in a field somewhere. And even I couldn’t really understand what happened. Simply I didn’t have much memory nor did I have enough smarts. In recent times on 9/11 I started to watch this program on History called ‘102 Minutes.’ I now watch this every year. And I will continue to do so. After watching this I can say I fully comprehend it now. It raw and unfiltered. I’ve seen people cry and be in panic, I’ve seen people die. I saw the towers collapse. Most of you might be saying you are too young to watch that. To see through the eyes of the people who experienced it all that day. But I say back to you. I can handle it. I was too young to understand what happened to fully grasp the impact it had on people’s lives. Yes, this is disturbing; yes, it is sad, and frightening. Now I know, now I can fully understand and now I know this is nothing and never would be something to make light of. I will never forget.