Yesterday was different. It was the first time in the past few years that I had thought about the date very much. I felt the date weighing on my mind throughout the day.
I will never forget the shock I felt that day, in 2001, when I fully woke up (I was in bed asleep when the planes hit) and found out what had happened. I felt like I had been kicked. My sinus infection (for I was suffering with one) seemed silly and my doctor's appointment that afternoon seemed less important (I still went, because I happen to like breathing, and there wasn't much I could do anyway). I remember the lines at the gas stations, even here in Oklahoma, and the prices soaring (although they didn't get nearly as high as they did elsewhere). I remember being counseled to wait a few days before getting gas (my doctor cared about what I was going to pay for gas as well as keeping me breathing).
Because of those memories I want to honor the people who died and the people who lived that day. They deserve to be honored.
But it is 7 years later, and my life has changed a lot. And I've got other things on my mind, things that seem more important now. Things that seemed like they would never happen then.
So, I remembered, at least for a little bit, in honor of the past and then I allowed myself to focus on the present. Because I'm fairly sure those people I'm honoring would want me to continue on with my life.
So, September 11th was meaningful. And I won't forget it. But, it's feeling like it's time for me to move forward. When I have children to teach, I'll share with them the importance of the date, while reminding them that we aren't going to live in fear.