As with any tragedy, anyone reading this entry remembers exactly where they were when they heard about the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center buildings, the Pentagon and in Pennsylvania. Our nation watched in shock and horror as the unthinkable unfolded right before our eyes. Here is my story and as challenging as it was, it in no way compares to what 1,000's of others experienced that day:
I had only been awake for a couple of hours after having brain surgery for a Chiari Malfomration about 20 hours prior to the attacks. I was in the ICU at Good Samaritan Hospital and watching the Today Show. I was alone. I watched what so many of you watched as the Today Show broke away to the news emergency that a plane had crashed into the first building. As they were interviewing a witness, the second plane made it's attack. Even with all of the drugs in my system, it was very clear to me that this was no accident. Being in a room with a glass wall, I could see the nurses going about their work without a clue what was going on. Shortly after the second plane hit, my OT and PT came into the room and I gave them a quick rundown of what had happened. They were shocked at the "coincidence of two planes crashing into the buildings." Through my drug induced fog, I told them there was no way it was an accident. I don't know how long we watched, but then the news was talking about the plane at the Pentagon. My husband arrived about then. The last he had heard on the radio was of the initial two planes and he was not aware of the Pentagon. Then in comes my Healing Touch nurse at which point I started puking everywhere and crying and I asked for the TV to be turned off. Once I had settled down and everyone cleared out, Motorcycle Guy and I continued to watch the news and heard about the plane in Pennsylvania By now the ICU nurses had a TV set up at their station. As the towers collapsed, all my husband said was, "I knew that would happen, I just didn't want to tell you. Airplane fuel burns at x degrees and steel melts at x degrees, there's no way those buildings could have remained standing." Leave it to my brilliant (and I mean that literally) husband to know the temperatures of these things. I still can't remember to this day what the actual numbers were! I don't know how long I was in ICU exactly and I don't really remember moving to my own room, but I seem to remember the intial shock of this event as clear as anyone else, despite my fogginess and pain.
Our area was effected by the deaths of eight victims. One woman was a resident of our new hometown and was in NYC for business. Her husband and children still live here. The other local victim was from here but was living in NYC and his parents still reside here. They were both killed while working inside the World Trade Centers. Our school district has a fundraiser this week called "Pennies for Heaven" to collect money for each of the foundations set up by these families. I will certainly be sending in my donations this week.
I hope everyone says a prayer today for peace and healing for the victims and their loved ones, for the physically, mentally and emotionally injured survivors and for our world, that we may learn to live together, to respect and learn from our differences, to realize our commonalities and to do no harm to one another.