It’s almost 20 years later and my mind still can’t grasp what happened. I went to the World Trade Center yesterday for the first time. I‘m 27 years old and I just saw one of the most infamous sites in the world for the first time.
It’s the fourth of July. A day where we should be celebrating men and women that lay down their lives for our freedom. As I look around me it’s beautiful. The sun is shining, it’s warm and there’s just that little bit of a breeze to keep you cool.
There are children running around blowing bubbles, people walking their dogs and runners glistening. The sun is starting to set and there are streaks of yellow, orange, and pink in the sky. A scene perfectly orchestrated by God almost as if it was written for a movie script.
The architecture around me is beautiful and pristine. Glass buildings are everywhere and flowers are hanging from the ceiling of the beautiful patio restaurants. I think there‘s a fountain where one of the towers used to be. I only say “I think” because I didn‘t let myself get close enough to it to actually see.
Everything is rebuilt now — at least physically. Any babies born after that year would never know just by looking at it, but I can‘t help but feel like I‘m looking at a graveyard when I see it. Even as fresh and new as it was, in my mind I saw the ash. In my mind, I saw the smoke. In my mind, I saw the falling man, and all our innocence broke.
I tell myself to stop being such a baby and stop crying because it‘s not like I was there. I only saw the collapse of America as we ever knew it, but I suppose that‘s an awful lot to bear. I can‘t help but think of us “before” whenever I see a child innocently playing. The child represents America. Carefree. Light.
I miss that feeling before the fire of 175 United flight. Let‘s not forget American 11. I know every passenger went straight to heaven. So, on this day of red, white and blue. Let‘s honor who showed up to help and mourn what we didn‘t know.
Let‘s mourn our innocence of the way we saw the world before the flames engulfed our sky and the black smoke swirled.