It's that time of year again. A nagging pain in the side of every American. Even 9 years later it's still so painful yet so easy to remember.
And everyone has their story.
We were living in Memphis. Freshly married just a month before, I was still searching for a job so I was home. My husband called and said that something was going on, and that I should turn on the news. He had just gotten to work and I could tell he hadn't yet understood what was going on either. As soon as I switched on the news the second plane hit the building.
Not wanting to be alone, I went to FedEx (where my husband worked) to have lunch and watch a briefing by the president on a portable tv I took with me. Getting into FedEx any day was like getting into the White House, this day was incredible. I remember telling the guard who was questioning why I was there, "look, I just came to have lunch with my husband, I didn't want to be alone." She didn't ask any other questions.
Then on my way home. I ran over something in the middle of the road which poked a hole in my gas tank. As I made my way home I could tell I was losing fuel and began to panic that someone would throw a lit cigarette out the window, and I would be toast. I finally pulled into a service station and called for help.
The way I think about it, the best way to remember and honor everyone that suffered on 9-11 is to do things to show them that they didn't win. That, in fact, I am not full of terror. That I love what my country stands for and that they didn't do anything to tarnish that.
So here are some options... (feel free to do any, some or all of the same things) I'd love to hear about it.
#1 Cry. Be sad. It's ok. It shows you are human and have compassion. It shows that human life has a value.
#2 Go to a public event. If it were me, I'd go to the Bama game, since they are playing Penn State and it's bound to be a good one. This shows you are not afraid to gather in large crowds. That we Americans have passions and a passion for life that we so enjoy.
#3 If you are a girl, mow your lawn in a bikini. Go vote for something (or plan your vote), take a class, or just go shopping. I think this just shows how American women have all the rights men do. Something we take for granted for sure.
#4 Learn something about Islam. We shouldn't fear things just because they are unfamiliar. Christians have their extremists too. Intolerance is their trademark, not ours. This country was founded on those escaping religious persecution, let's not take a step back folks.
#5 Just be kind. Treat people the way we did in the days following the attacks. Fly a flag. Be American. Be glad that whatever you believe in decided you were to be born here and not there.
And just for a bonus, you should watch this...
That is what it's all about, folks.
So that's what I'm going to do. How about you?
Where were you on September 11th, 2001?