After sharing my memories of the day of 9/11, I wanted to be sure to record what I never want to forget about living the next few months in a post-9/11 world.
I never want to forget being hesitant to go see the musical "Mamma Mia!"
in Boston the following night, how it felt wrong to go out and enjoy
yourself. I never want to forget the cast coming out and talking about
their similar hesitation and ending with a rousing rendition of God
I never want to forget my dad and I staying
home for the first New England Patriots game when the NFL started
playing again - it was against the New York Jets and the symbolism of
the Patriots vs. the Jets with the potential for a terrorist attack was
not lost on us - and feeling sheepish afterwards when everything was ok.
I never want to forget bursting with patriotism and American
pride, covering my car with whatever patriotic sticker or American flag I
could get my hands on. I never want to forget driving the lake by my
house with Lisa, Amanda, Chris and Ryan, blasting "Proud to be an
American" and Whitney Houston's version of the "National Anthem,"
stopping at any policeman, fireman, or military man we saw to say,
"Thank you for serving our country!"
I never want to
forget our school holding an assembly in the following days featuring
speeches by state Rep. Brad Jones, and others, and worrying that people
like my leftist teacher Mr. Ryan might turn it into a lovey-dovey
peacefest, so I volunteered to give a speech. I've already forgotten
what my speech said, but I never want to forget that my opening lines
were: "Does anyone have any personal connections to the victims of
9/11? The truth is we all do. We are all Americans."
never want to forget how the world changed on that day, how
insignificant it felt to be going to high school and college, how I
wanted to quit school and do something meaningful like become an army
nurse. I never want to forget taking California schools off my list -
if there was another terrorist attack, I didn't want to be cut off from
my family for days, I needed to be close enough to drive home in an
I never want to forget the spirit of unity and patriotism that swept the
country and left us with such hope for the future, and the sadness as
it faded over the weeks and months and years, seeing fewer and fewer
flags, watching the media get less and less patriotic - even talking
"quagmire" within days of our assault on Afghanistan.
I never want to forget any of the events and actions I made in the weeks that followed 9/11, as insignificant as they may be they are mine and now they are forever.