Now that my son is 8, he is very interested in history and science.
I had the History Channel on last night, with it's various September 11 programs. My son was very interested in them, as he was just 1 and a half back in 2001. So we watched a show about the evacuation of the World Trade Centers, and the heroic sacrifice of one of the security chiefs who had been anticipated a terrorist attack since the bombing in 1993.
At some point, watching the planes crash and the buildings fall became too much for me. As I watch the famous footage of the second jet collide with the tower, the fact that 300 lives ended at that moment hits me very hard. To know that as the buildings fall (in the span it takes to write this sentence), thousands of regular, innocent people will die overcomes me.
While I was fortunate enough not to have known anyone personally who died that day, I do have a friend who was across the river watching it happen, fearful of what was coming next. The husband of a good friend of mine was working in the pentagon that day. Just regular people, doing regular jobs.
Along with the sense of loss, it was the fear of not knowing when the planes would stop crashing that I still carry with me. I live 30 miles due east of a nuclear power plant, and yes, our family has an 'escape plan' if it is ever attacked.
September 11, 2008.