Before, After

It was a Tuesday like any other.  I was a sophomore in High School. During 1st hour Physical Education whispers started among my classmates …

… plane crash

… world trade center

… two planes

… another at the pentagon

By the time 2nd hour started at 9:07 am (Central), it had been four minutes since the fourth plane crashed in the field in Pennsylvania and I heard the word ‘terrorist’ for the first time.

I’m sure I’d heard it before.  I mean, I knew what the word meant but I’d never broadened my awareness enough to notice until it came to me.

My Spanish teacher was in tears.  She took us all to another classroom where three small classes were all squished together in front of a television silently watching in shock.

It was probably the first time 30+ fifteen-year-old ever watched the news.

The bell for 3rd/hour rang at 10:43 but none of us moved, transfixed.

We started to make our way to lunch around 11:17, but nothing was the same as it was the day before.

We’d witness true horrors for the first time in our young lives.

Over the coming weeks our eyes opened, our hearts broke, hardened, and broke again.

We watched as our country went to war that would last 15 years and counting…



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