Saturday, September 10, 2011

9/11 Memorial Opening

The alarm went off at its usual time, a few minutes before eight a.m. Instead of the usual music or DJ banter, I heard news that the president was being taken to an undisclosed location. I shook Greg to wake him. "Somethings going on, turn on the TV." Greg and I tuned in just after a plane crashed into the world trade center's second tower.  A feeling of sickness overwhelmed me. I crossed my hands over my belly, a tinge of despair passed through me thinking of the world I was bringing this new life into. I was two months pregnant and having very little morning sickness, but that September morning, my stomach was in knots and wave after wave of nausea washed over me.  My husband and I watched in disbelief as more tragedy unfolded. The towers collapsed, the Pentagon attacked, planes crashing to the ground. The terrible amount of lives lost and massive devastation to our country.  I was scheduled to work that morning at 10 a.m. I was working at an upscale handmade furniture Gallery as Manager and designer. I called the owner around 9:45 that morning and told him I did not want to work and felt we should close the store. I could not believe when he said to me that what was happening in New York had nothing to do with us here in LA??? I was shocked at how flippant he seemed. He told me to be at work as soon as possible if I wanted to keep my job. I got dressed, tried to push past the feeling of unease that would not let go. Driving to Santa Monica that morning, I was in shock about how little traffic there was, the only cars on the road were mine and police cars. My route took me past the Federal building in Westwood, access to the building was closed, streets closed leading towards it. Police vans and swat teams surrounded it on all sides, a policeman stopped me, asked me where I was headed, when I told him, he shook his head and waved me on. I felt the same way! Did the owner really think that during this American tragedy, someone would be rushing out to pick out fabric for their new sofa? I don't know if because he was Armenian and his family was forced to flee their home with nothing due to wars in the Middle East, he had seen destruction first-hand, was this morning's event a small thing for him? I couldn't understand where he was coming from, after working for two hours and not one person coming to the shop, the owners wife came in and told me to go home.  I was really uneasy working for him after that, although a few weeks later the owner apologized for that day and admitted that he did not realize the scale of what had happened on 9/11. Everyone has their story of that tragic morning and it will live on in our memory as one of the worst tragedies of our time. If you would like to share where you were on that morning, I would love to hear your story. My heart goes out to all the victims families and those who lost people that they cared for and loved on that day.  Being so close to New York, I wish I had the nerve to go to the opening of the 9/11 Memorial, but I am hesitant, and slightly angry that I feel that tinge of fear. To all the heroes and survivors, cheers to you and yours and to a safe 9/11 Memorial Opening weekend.

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for sharing your story. Your thoughts and fears while specific to your life circumstances, I am certain are shared by many.

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