I remember Meeting Lisa at the Salt lake Airport to "see her off" for her transition from the MTC (missionary training center) to her mission in California. They never made that transition that morning. In fact they wouldn't make that transition for a while. As we drove back into Salt lake city from the airport, I left Rick at a bus stop so that he could ride the bus up to school. I turned on the radio and the reports were coming in of an airplane that had struck one of the twin towers. The reports were benign and seemed like a fluke tragedy.
I arrived at my office phone job where I worked customer service for the "Marriott Rewards" program. The phones were silent. Not a single one would ring. We sat their gathered around wheeled in TV's, watching the news unfold as the second tower was hit, as the towers collapsed, as the pentagon was hit and as they had the crash landing in PA.
I felt sick. Everyone felt sick, and helpless. We were sent home from work that day mid-way through. It seemed that no one wanted to see how their rewards were doing, nor did they want to plan a trip. It was very strange.
This would continue for a very long time. Our office had to "let people go" because there just wasn't enough customers wanting to redeem their rewards.
I was in my first trimester of pregnancy with Oscar and I was physically sick anyway. I recall a few days after the tragedy of us being paid to stand in the back parking lot of the building tearing out a page from all of the brochures because it was a page on the twin-tower Marriott.
I wanted to puke...and not just because I was pregnant.
I remember watching with my "cup half full" outlook, praying that they would find more survivors a week+ as they began to try to pull NY back together. I was sadly disappointed. Although there were success stories, there just didn't seem to be enough.
Rick's interviews that he had had lined up for jobs post graduation went cold. He decided to take the LSAT and see about Law school. Never had we considered this option before. In fact because of 9/11 he is an attorney today.
During law school we spent many hours flying across this nation. New security measures, and an ever presence of insecurity in the general populace, I always thought about those flights and those people who never made it home that day. It was haunting.
I wanted to write this down because everyone who was old enough to remember, has a similar story. Just like when JFK died, or many other historically marked tragedies, I will always remember. If I'm not here to tell you...you can pull up the archives of this blog and know that I lived that day and that my life has drastically been altered by this experience. Not necessarily for the worse, but certainly was a path that changed following the aftermath of this national tragedy.
To those who lost the most, I hope you have chosen to live and to share with the world the resilience and strength of the American spirit. We can do hard things and can make this world a better place.