Everyone has their 9/11 stories. A dear friend was working across the street from the Towers when it happened and can't get the images out of her mind. A college mate lost many friends, as her husband is a member of the NYFD. The thing we all have in common if we are citizens of this country is for the first time in our lifetime, we experienced a horrific attack on our nation's soil. No matter what your political affiliation, on that day and the days and months to follow, we were one nation. We came together, flags waving on nearly every car that drove by until the wind and weather shredded them. To be an American on 9/11/01 was an honor.
I want to believe there was less crime that day. That even the most mischievous took pause and prayed in some way.
My husband was on the tarmac at Newark airport at 9:40 pm on 9/10/01. He called from his cell to say his flight was being delayed due to the weather. He wasn't sure if it would take off that night. He traveled all the time back then, and with the ease and convenience of cell phones, I stopped paying attention to where he was off to next. So I wasn't sure if he made his destination, and we did not speak after that.
At approximately 8:50 am, with the rest of the nation, I heard about the attack and watched, glued to the streaming video at work, as we gasped in horror. One of those flights left from Newark. I was pretty sure Todd was not bound for CA, but was not sure. If you recall, phone lines and cell towers were overloaded and no one could get through. I prayed, had faith that whatever the outcome, God was in charge. Finally at 11:30 that night he got through. He was in Minneapolis with a colleague, had a car rented, and would be driving back to MD the next day as all flights were cancelled indefinitely.
We had not been a church attending family during that season of our life and had just moved from Cincinnati the month before. That Sunday, I opened the yellow pages and found Damascus Road Community Church in the town we were building our house. I told the family to get up and dressed, we were going to church to pray for the families that lost loved ones, and to be grateful to be safe and American.
For all the families, friends and colleagues that lost someone, to the children that never met their parents, the brave fire fighters and police and other volunteers that risked their lives to help save another...THANK YOU. This event motivated me to volunteer to the less fortunate. To give back, get involved, and step out of my comfort zone.
I believe that is what life is about. Service to others, and stretching to grow. Give...it feels good.