Today in Church we talked about self-reliance and food storage and emergency preparedness. It was really good for me, because for the last several months, and especially after Katrina, I have been wanting to do better at having my family be prepared. So last Sunday I ordered some food from the Cannery…used my scrap budget. A small sacrifice for something I know is extremely important. Besides, if I was as prepared for emergencies as I am for scrapping then we’d have more than enough.
Kind of fitting that we focused on that today, as it is the fourth anniversary of 9-11. Sometimes I think of it and it seems so long ago…it isn’t really something I think about much anymore. It has been pushed aside due to life. My life. But today I wanted to remember that day a bit more, and try to recapture how I felt, and some of what I learned. At the very least, I wanted to blog about my experience on September 11, 2001.
We lived in Provo…right on 9th East. Joel worked at BYU, just down the street. Bria wasn’t quite a year old yet. We were having Joel’s best friend, Matt, and his latest girlfriend over for dinner that night and I needed to go shopping for a couple last minute things for the salad. So, I took Joel to work and I stopped at the Creamery on 9th (used to be Kent’s market) to get those last few items and then planned on heading home to clean the house and babysit my baby nephew, Brayden.
When I walked into the little grocery store, I found it a little odd that they were listening to talk radio. I decided that probably nobody really comes shopping at 8:00 in the morning, and they really liked that particular talk show or something. But as I walked through the store, putting things into my cart, I started realizing what I was hearing. People jumping out of the World Trade Center? Planes crashing into buildings? Fire at the Pentagon? What????? I couldn’t make any sense of what they were saying, and I honestly thought it was something like Orson Welles’ War of the Worlds. I really wasn’t too alarmed, because everything I was hearing was just too improbable….it all had to be somebody’s idea of a joke.
But then one of the stock boys came up to me. He had tears in his eyes, and he asked me, “Can you believe what is happening?” I clearly remember answering, “What is happening? I can’t understand what I’m hearing.” He then explained to me, quite emotionally, his understanding of the situation. Which, of course, at 8:00 am was still laden with unfounded rumors, like the White House had been bombed and the President was missing. Shocked, I hurriedly paid for my groceries and drove home, listening to talk radio all the way.
We didn’t have TV back then…we couldn’t afford to pay for cable, and our TV had terrible reception as far as local channels were concerned, so I just continued to listen to the Doug Wright show on KSL 1160. Of course, Joel called me to find out if I knew what was happening. He didn’t really work much that day…they all just sat in the breakroom and watched the television, only getting up if the phone rang. I think all of America was on hold that day. My sister-in-law brought Brayden to me and stayed and listened for a while. When she left, I just sat on the couch holding him while Bria sat next to me…not moving, just listening. Listening to the horrible thing that was happening to our country.
After Brayden left, Bria and I drove to my mom’s house and watched the news there. I watched the twin towers collapse over and over and over again. I was horrified…glued to the television….needing to watch it just one more time in order to believe that it had actually taken place.
I also remember being deeply touched by the many nations around the world who played our national anthem and flew our flag that day. Because this was not just an attack on America, it was an attack on the world. I will never forget a woman in France who declared on the news, “Today, we are all Americans.”
Now, it is just “something that happened a few years ago.” Something terrifying, certainly, but the horror has been covered by time. And life. And now our country is dealing with something else that is just as horrible in its own right. It makes me think of how the scriptures say that God always sends “something” to make the people remember Him. And if we don’t even remember what happened, how will we remember Him? And if we aren’t even following the commandment to be prepared, how can we say we are remembering Him? We can’t. We need to remember, to not get so caught up in life that we forget the repercussions of 9-11, or Katrina, or whatever reminders we are sent…because if we forget those, we are essentially forgetting God.
I just remember thinking, “THE WORLD IS ENDING AND I JUST MOVED FROM MY MOM.” It is something we need to keep close to our remembrances… Good blog.
I have loved reading your blog – your insights into your children are amazing. You seem to really enjoy life, being a mom, and being a wife. I, too, remember the feelings of 9-11. That was a difficult day. Thanks for the reminder about food storage. I had to giggle at “If I was as prepared with food storage as I am with scrapbook supplies. . .” Hits home! Good luck in your adventure as VT Coordinator. Sometimes I think that’s more difficult than being the president! (And it’s okay to feel sad about letting go – it’s such a huge part of your life for so long and then BAM! it’s over!). Enjoyed your blog!
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I watched the whole horrible event live on T.V. When the second tower was I hit, I said to my Hubs, “they better get everyone out of there because both towers are going to collape soon !” Then my phone started ringing…my 5 kids all called to get reassurance that everything would be alright in spite of the terrorist attacks…an event I wish never would have happened and I’ll never forget !
I remember that day very vividly. It was a very hard sad day for so many people. I still remember watching it over and over and still not believing it.
I hadn’t read this post before. I can see why it’s one of your faves. Your insight into the importance of remembering really struck me.
Another one of those life changing events. I will never forget living her in DC was just as bad for those in NY and PA. I remember hearing the F-16’s take off from the base I worked at and not fully understanding what was going on. I wrote a post about it last September when they had a dedication ceremony here at the Pentagon. I was lucky enough to attend.
My husband called me from his work and told me to turn on the tv. I was slightly annoyed because at the time I was headed out the door to go for a walk. Usually the tv was on but I hadn’t turned it on that morning. I ran down the stairs turned our set on and watched the first tower crumble. And I thought “How many people did I just watch die?”
It is so true we need to be ready. We need to listen to what our prophets have been telling us for years. I’m slowly working on it here.
This post has brought me to tears. I distinctly remember watching the entire thing unfold on TV and I don’t think that I stopped crying the entire day. It is something that I will NEVER forget. Everytime I see the flag waving beautifully or hear the National Anthem–I am rought to tears.
I can remember Rob and I getting ready for work. I thought Rob was watching a movie and told him to turn it off. He just looked at me and said” Rach we need to know what is going on in the world”
ME: Where is this
he then explained everything to me. Great post
Wow.. What an amazing post!! I remember when 9-11 happened. It was so scary and sad. I was just barley graduated from Highschool. We were packing to move to Utah within 4 days. We had planned on flying Grandma and Grandpa to Utah where my Aunt and Uncle would pick them up, my dad and Brothers would drive in one car and mom and i would drive the Van.. We had the van PACKED full except 2 seats! Well when this all happened, the airports were closed and Grandma and Grandpa were going to have to drive with us. I was crammed in the back of the minivan between boxes. Made for one long trip from CA!! But i remember laying in bed, wondering what wouldhappen next. It is a day we will all remember for the rest of our lives. Your blog brought tears to my eyes! Thanks for sharing!!
I remember 9-11 also. I was in my 12th grade science class when my teacher came in and told us what had happened. School pretty much stopped. We went to our classes, but all we did was watch the news. I think Americans became a lot more patriotic that day!
Lara, another great post.
I was pregnant with Ian and couldn’t do much in the way of moving around. Charlie just made sure that Lisa caught the bus, Jasmine was still sleeping and he made sure that I was in front of the TV/computer screen we had so I can email my family as phone calls triggered nausea. I only managed to talk to Charlie.
When I saw the plane crash into one of the towers, I got Jasmine out of the room and just prayed with her. I wanted to get Lisa from school and Charlie from work, but I know that like most people, the waiting game has just begun…
I remember feeling so emotional when Lisa walked in the door and let her tell me all that they did in light of 9/11. Most of the day, the school just had their radio turned on and broadcasting. Charlie was a little late coming home as traffic was awful in the afternoon on Baseline Rd in Gilbert.
You are right; no matter how much time passes by, 9/11 stands as memorial that we as people need to be more united and faithful that there is a God and that He alone understands all… It taught me to be more prepared also.
I was pregnant with my boy and would sleep in the mornings after Brice left for school while my little girl napped. I didn’t even know what happened until Brice came home because all his classes at SUU had been canceled for the day.
I love these posts from the vault. 2005-wow!
It’s amazing how we always remember what we were doing on significant days like this.(my parents always told me that they knew exactly what they were doing the day Kennedy was shot) I remember every thing from that morning that day as well. And how I was afraid to sleep that night.
Every time I think of 9-11, I get tears in my eyes. It’s definitely one of those moments all of us who were alive will remember always.
I remember that day. . . I was up early, as usual, out for my jog. I remember thinking it was such a beautiful, cloudless day. And then my husband came out on the porch as I was jogging down the driveway and said something like “a jet crashed into a building in New York”. I thought ‘what? Did the pilot have a heart attack or something?’
I came inside and saw the replay of the jet going into the first twin tower, and the narration behind it – but I couldn’t make much sense of it. I realize now I was in shock. I couldn’t really take it in, or accept it. So I went in and showered, and when I came out, I heard that a second building had been hit, and soon after the reports becan coming in of the other plane crashes. It was unreal, so unbelieveable to me. But as the days went by, I was so proud of how we all pulled together as a country. Our priorities were all as one. We were proud to be Americans, and without a doubt knew that we needed to defend our nation.
Whatever has happened since then?
I will always remember what I was doing on 9/11/2001. But you’re right, it has become a day that something bad happened a long time ago.
That was a crazy, surreal day. We were watching coverage at home, and saw the second tower collapse live. I drove my daughter to kindergarten mid-morning and it was eerily quiet for a place in the flight path of a major airport and an Air Force Reserve Base.
Even more memorable was the uniting of the American public in the months following. I miss the ubiquitous outward signs of patriotism that served as constant reminders of who we are and how blessed we are.
That was beautiful. Thanks for linking to it today.