Late to the dance again

But that’s okay.  We were enjoying a little time with friends.  The kind of friends who you wish were family.  Thank God for this kind of friend.  Life is good.

Many people have been posting their memories and musings about September 11, 2001.  Mike LaMonica’s blog has some very touching rememberances by people from all over the world.  If you have time you should read them.  Really.  There are over 375 of them as of this posting and there may be more by the time you read this, so plan accordingly.

Loved your post Mike.  Thanks for making sure we don’t forget those who gave all.

My own memories of that day are this:  I was in the hospital, having just delivered our son by Cesarean section at 12:03am on September 10th.  I woke up that morning and had his hospital bassinet brought into the room.  I was spending my morning just watching him sleep.  I may have also had a book to read, but it wasn’t getting nearly the attention that he was.  The cleaning staff person had just come into the room when she noticed that I didn’t have the tv on.  She commented on that, and then quickly said that it was probably better that I didn’t have it on anyway.  Well of course, now my curiosity was picqued and after she was finished, I turned on the tv and saw that a plane had hit the first tower.  I remember thinking, wow, that airline is going to have a tough time explaining this away.

And then I saw the video of the second plane hitting.  And I thought, now this is just too much!  Two planes hitting the towers in New York!  There’s going to have to be an investigation into how much time they have these pilots in the air!  Then the words of the news commentator got through past the images and the shock.  I had put the sound on very low you see, so as not to wake the baby.  I just sat there in my bed.  My jaw was somewhere in the vicinity of my lap.  It was just so hard to believe.  And I looked at my son and wondered what kind of world had we just brought him in to.  He was so very new and this was such a horrendous happening.

I remember asking my obstetrician the next day to sign my discharge papers as I wanted to go home.  I felt like a target sitting there in a building that had so many people in it.  I remembered the words of a guy I had very briefly dated many years before.  He had worked for General Dynamics and he & I were discussing a book I had read.  He had told me then that with the technology of the weapons out there that any city with a population over 10,000 was a target.  I felt that if I could just get home, we would have a chance.  A single family home couldn’t possibly be a prime target.  They had attacked large buildings in major cities, so we should be safer at home than in the hospital.  I convinced my ob to let me go home without telling him of my fears.  I simply wasn’t going to stay in that place any longer.  I agreed to a home care nurse’s visit.  Whatever it took to get out of there.  That’s what I remember.  That’s what I will not forget.

BooBoo’s due date was actually September 20th and sweet little boy that he is, he decided to arrive ten days early.  I for one am so glad that he did.  He was one of my reasons for keeping on after that horrendous day.  I had been given a purpose and that purpose was/is to make sure that the world he grows up in is a better world.  One where he can grow up to be what he wants to be.  One that someday will see peace.

Oh yes, I do still believe peace can happen in our world and yet I am not naive enough to think that it will happen without deterrant force.  I thank God for all our men and women in the military.  Without them, we would not be the free nation that we are today.  We should also remember all the people who lost their lives in those towers, in the Pentagon and on Flight 93 in that field in Pennsylvania.  Including those who went in to rescue others.  It takes guts to run into a building when everyone else is running out.

One more memoryfrom that time:  After the planes were allowed to return to the air, I was upstairs with BooBoo.  Our daughter Ditty who was not yet three at the time was playing downstairs when I heard a strange noise outside.  It sounded like a small plane.  I went to our deck door which faces east and saw a small plane flying very low.  The sight of that plane almost put me in shock.  It was coming straight at our house.  I remember thinking that I wouldn’t be able to make it downstairs to grab Ditty and get us all out of the house before the plane hit.  And I wasn’t going to leave the house without both of my children safely out either. 

So I did the only thing I could think of to do.  I opened up the deck door and walked out onto the deck with BooBoo in my arms and I faced that plane.  Silently I dared the pilot to look into my eyes.  I dared him to actually see the faces of the people he was about to kill.  And I prayed. 

I prayed that the plane would not hit my home.  That my children would live and be able to grow up.  That they would not die so very young.

Since you are reading my post, you obviously know that the plane did not hit our house.  The co-pilot was able to pull the plane up.  It passed over our roof with about 6 feet to spare.  Yes, that close.  As for me, I looked at the plane flying over my head and I memorized the numbers on the underside and tail of that plane.  I stepped back into the house and wrote them down.  Then I called the small airport in our town and chewed them out for letting that idiot fly that plane.  Yes, I really did.

I explained (a rather nice word considering how ticked I was) that the pilot barely missed hitting our house and that I had a small child and a newborn here with me and considering the events of September 11th, the pilot should have had more sense than to fly a plane that low anymore.  I also gave them the numbers from the bottom and tail of the plane and told them that they needed to locate that plane and tell the pilot off for me. 

I also declared, yes declared, that my house was a “no fly zone” and if I ever saw another plane pull that kind of stunt again I was not going to be so nice as to call them, I was going to call the police and let them deal with the matter. 

Now, that probably gave you a good laugh but I was quite serious.  I was mad as could be about the near loss of life that had just occurred because of some idiot’s stupid actions and I wasn’t going to let it pass without making sure that someone did something to help keep us safe.  Our house had been on the local flight school’s flight plan long enough!  They could just go and train the newbies somewhere else!  And for the record, for quite a long time they did.

You’re probably also thinking that this post is a bit disjointed.  You’re right.  I’m exhausted and I pushed publish earlier and not save draft like I wanted.  I’ll clean it up later.  After I get some much needed sleep in my own bed.  Or maybe not.  Sometimes we aren’t as coherent as we’d like to be but our point gets through anyway.

My point to all this:  Remember 9/11/01.  Remember those who gave all.  Do not remember so that you can hate without reason.  Remember instead the love for neighbor, the pride in our service people and the hope for a better tomorrow that makes our country a wonderful place to live and raise our children.  Remember how we came together in true E Pluribus, Unum (From Many, One) fashion.  We have always united in the face of danger.  May we always continue to do so.

So I’ll leave you with the sign off words of one of my favorite comedians, Mr. Red Skelton:  Good night and God Bless.

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Friends, Romans, Countrymen

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