Sunday, September 10, 2006
On September 11, 2001, I was teaching. We were giving a state mandate test where we could not be disturbed. On the way to the office to turn everything in an aide said “There has been a terrorist attack, turn on your TV.” Both towers had been hit and I was standing there in a room full of 11 years olds asking what’s going on.
I was stunned. I certainly did not know what to tell them. I was trying to form some explanation when another news flash came on – the Pentagon had been hit. I started crying as I realized that the attach was still going on. I know my crying upset some of the children but I couldn’t stop. I thought back to my first grade experience when my teacher had burst into tears upon hearing that President Kennedy had been killed. The bell rang sending my student off to other teacher while I had planning. I had never seen 800 students move so quietly.
I stood in the office with my principal and some other teacher in total silence and watched the towers fall. I wanted my children, my own. I thought of calling Mollie at her school but she was too little. I would have cried when I heard her voice which would have been the worse thing. My son was at my school though, in the 8th grade. I walked to his room not knowing if he would want his mother in his to intrude. Every classroom had it TV on. Went my son’s teacher saw me peeking in the door he motioned me in. My son reached out and took my hand, his was ice cold. I felt better for having seen him but the rest of the day was mostly a blur.
I do remember a few of my students asked if they could go out in the hall to pray once they came back to me. I went out with them but let them say what they felt in their prayers. I remember all those kids, I always will. We shared history. Although I remember I am not yet ready to see movies about the events. I don’t mind them being made, I just can’t watch. Maybe someday.