The air was still that morning.
Crisp with the coming of autumn it enveloped us as we ventured off to class. Deb and I. And as we walked we chatted about everything and nothing, knowing a stop for coffee was inevitable. And into the corner Starbucks we walked, as if nothing had happened. For to us, nothing had.
And we were met with silence. Only the movements of the making of coffee filled the space. And in the silence a man on the radio conveyed the news. As if we had traveled back through time. Oblivious we walked in, chattering, ordering, sipping. And out we went, walking off to class. And when we arrived, the news met us. For me it was written on the chalkboard, scarce in white…class is canceled. Our teacher spoke…"the news, the towers, New York…” It was all a blur.
And we all in silence picked up our things and walked back out the door. It was the morning that history was being made. And when I arrived back home, us girls sat, mouths silenced, hands covering as we watched this history unfold. It was and is still horrific, saddening, unbelievable. And as we watched, we prayed silently for it to be over. That it was not reality. And yet, some of us knew people working in New York City. And the phones rang, mouths chattered, eyes wept.
And still today we remember vividly the accounts of the day the towers fell. Because it was horrific. Because it was history being made. Because we couldn’t tear our eyes from the television. Because it seemed so unreal. Because…
Every year I remember on this day the same as my mother remembers the day Kennedy was shot. The events, the images imprinted on my mind, the horror and sadness. The families that lost. That miss, that ache. And I’m reminded that life is a gift. Everyday is one to be held close. Everyone to be loved with all I have.
Today is not just a reminder of the day history was made, the day life altered, the changing of a skyline…it’s also a reminder to love, to give, to pour out for one another. Change the way we live.
And so we remember…the events and to love. Because there’s only one life we get to live, one chance, one go ahead at the day. Because we never know when it will be our last.
Make today count.
(If you have children that don’t know the account this book is great: Fireboat by Maira Kalman.)