Teaching a class full of InNoCeNt children is exactly what I was doing “WhEn tHe WorLd StOpPeD tUrNiNg”. While my class of first graders were getting ready to have their morning snack, our school nurse came to my room and told me that two planes had crashed into the twin towers. I had just been to the World Trade Center’s BuiLdiNg 7 two days prior to see my then boyfriend, now husband’s office. He was planning on going into the office around 9:00 the morning of 9/11 to drop something off. As the nurse continued telling me that the planes were part of a terror attack and that the buildings had collapsed I could not WrAp My MiNd ArOuNd what she was saying. It was as if information that could take a lifetime to comprehend was tucked into a two minute conversation. All I could say was “My BoYfRiEnD wOrKs ThErE.” Since I had just been to his office I knew exactly how close his building was to the towers and tried to call him on my cell phone. By now it was 11:00 a.m. and cell usage in New Jersey was completely hit or miss. I finally had a voice mail come through that Rob left me at 9:00 a.m. telling me that a plane had hit the World Trade Center and that He WaS oK. I felt better but thought….ok since then another plane hit, the towers fell, and I had no idea if he had ever made it to his office. Luckily, he got a call through to me around noon and explained that he was on 31st street headed to work when the first plane hit and that he was fine. I was relieved but along with everyone else in AmErIcA that day, I felt numb. Our school finished the day with parents lined up to pick up their kids. I drove home and will never forget the sight of those two giant plumes of smoke that now replaced the buildings that I had TaKeN fOr GrAnTeD being able to view so easily every day of my life. Later that night building 7 was the third building to collapse.
Everyone has their story of where they were, how they reacted, and the change it made within them. My story doesn’t come close to anything that those who were there experienced or those who lost a loved one went through, but it will stay with me as a day that changed the world.
May we always PrAy for those who were lost and the families who suffered. Ten years later the gaping hole in the skyline remains proof that FrEeDoM iSn’T FrEe and that you must LIVE every day to it’s fullest.
Guest Writer Robyn, from New Jersey