One of the girls from my ediets support group asked:
“what were you doing on 9/11/01?”
this is what I answered….
Elizabeth – on 9/11/01 – I was asleep with my honey. My bro woke me up that morning…I remember he told me to turn on the tv (when he was in college, he lived with us). In bed, in my pjs – I saw the first tower in flames. I thought it was a movie. This couldn’t be real. My bro said he woke up to the Sarah and Vinnie show and the morning djs were talking about the World Trade Center being hit. He thought they were making a joke. Then he turned on the TV and saw.
We got up – we all decided to go to work and school that day. I remember, we had the living room TV on. Before we left the house – we saw the next tower hit. My stomach dropped. I raced to call my mother and my cousin and my father. I had another cousin going to school in NY – she emailed me back. She was 9 hours away from NYC.
I had NPR on all day in my office. Many of my co-workers were shaken to the bone.
I was drowning in that whole chaotic mess of sorrow and outrage…and helplessness….
I found my best friend and ex-boyfriend. He saved my life once. We held on to each other – wondering why the world is the way it is.
I went to the radio station – looking for something to channel these emotions. I ended up on campus – interviewing students. Some didn’t want to talk. Others felt grateful to have another human being to pour out their grief and frustration. There was a make-shift memorial set-up at Sproul Plaza – students brought flowers, signed posters, and mourned together. Later a vigil – on the birth place of student free speech and actvisim. I worked with the news department on the community reaction to what happened. We broadcasted my interviews, that evening.
I was scheduled to go back to work – I asked my boss if I could shut down the lab early. He agreed. I wasn’t feeling well and I didn’t think I can handle any more customers. One MBA came in after I closed up – she was very upset. She asked – how dare I close up early the lab without giving students fair warning. I don’t think she was in touch with much of reality that….it’s not like the US was given fair warning for any of those lives lost, on that day.
After 9/11 – my brother was called up to serve. I was terrified. We were also concerned for his college career. This was his last year at UC Berkeley. If he had to serve, he would have had to drop out of school. Plus – he didn’t complete his Advanced training – all he would be good for would be to hold a gun….I think. Well, I was scared. Thankfully, his commanding officers understood the situation and allowed him to continue his studies.