This week everyone is remembering. Because we are not supposed to forget.
So I will remember….
I was teaching middle school Spanish.
The assistant principal came to the door to say a plane had crashed in the World Trade Center and not to turn on the TV.
I didn’t know what the World Trade Center was.
I was fresh out of college. Very young. Very naive.
At lunch I realized what was going on, but needed people to explain to me what all the politics were. I never heard of the World Trade Center, or the terrorists groups, or anything.
After work I needed gas because I had coasted into the parking lot that morning on fumes. Due to the uncertainty of what was going to happen with the middle east? The lines at the pumps were unbelievable.
I almost ran out of gas waiting. And I paid about a million dollars.
I went to my boyfriend’s house. He had slept through the whole damn day. He worked third shift, but it seemed unreal. I turned the TV on for him and he almost shat himself.
I went home to my parents’ house. My mom wouldn’t stop watching the news. She said she thought this was what had been foretold in Revelation.
I told her to get a grip. Just because bad stuff was happening to Americans didn’t mean the world was ending. I told her to remember the Holocaust and the atomic bombs and other countries who had more people die. And the end of the world didn’t happen.
I was angry.
I was angry that these terrorists made America start talking about Armageddon like we were the only country that mattered.
I was angry that moms and dads and uncles and aunts and brothers and sisters went to work like it was no big deal and weren’t going to come home.
I was angry at the patriotism, but also found comfort in it.
I was angry that people forgot for a minute that it was my little brother’s 16th birthday FIRST. It was HIS DAY before it was the terrorist’s day.
I was angry that people kept saying, “if this then the terrorists win,” “if that then the terrorists win,”.
I was angry that for awhile? EVERYTHING was blamed on terrorism and American reverted to the old witch hunt mentality again. If you’re not with us, you must be against us.
When will we learn our lesson?
When will we realize that these egocentric attitudes and easily divisiveness is exactly why others hate us.
When will we really be able to remember that love that everyone talks about?
Love means not hating.
I don’t think Americans can quit their habit of hating. They want to. They do. They keep talking about needing to spread the love, but in the name of love? They hate.
And this is something I will remember. That spreading hate? Will make a day explode again.