As I sit here this morning on my soft orange microfiber swivel chair in my living room, warming my hands with my mug of hot green tea, I cannot help but reflect on where I was 11 years ago on September 11th.
I am gazing out my living room window right now as the morning sunlight is streaming through my white plantation shutters.
The light coming through the window reminds me of the morning light coming into my office window on the morning of September 11th, 2001.
I worked in the financial industry at the time, and our hours synched up with the stock market. In other words, I started my day at 6am, and usually left the office at 3pm (I live in California).
In September of 2001, I was eight months pregnant with my oldest, Broadway. Yes, eight months pregnant, and ready to pop anytime. :0
I was usually in my car around 5:30am every morning to start my drive into the office. This particular day was no different.
As I was about halfway through my commute, I turned on the radio in my 1995 teal Honda civic hatchback, and heard people panicky and screaming that the twin tower in New York City had been hit by a plane.
I thought that it was such a strange accidental crash. It didn’t occur to me for a second that this had been planned.
I arrive at my office building in Century City a little before 6am, took the elevator up to my 10th floor office, put my bag on my desk, and wandered into the conference room.
One of my co-workers had turned on the big screen TV in the room and was watching in shock at the hysteria that was sweeping through New York City.
As we were taking the scene in, the second plane crashed into the other building. The second plane crashed into the second building at 6:03am.
I will never forget this moment.
I felt like our country was under attack, and we were not safe.
I ran back to my office and called Mountain Man, woke him up, and told him what was going on. He said he would watch the news when he woke up (his hours were a bit later than mine).
I told him, “no”, you have to get up now. I was shaking.
Looking out the window of my 10th floor office, all I could think about was the possibility that a plane would crash into my office window. After all, I was watching people jumping out of the 40th floor of their buildings to escape the blazing fires roaring in their office space. This particular memory is what makes me tear up every time.
My co worker and I received a call from our Director who had been grounded at the LAX airport. He was supposed to fly up to San Francisco, but no planes were taking off.
He told us to get out of the office as quickly as possible.
We gathered our things, went down the elevator, and headed for our cars.
The drive home was surreal.
People were in shock.
And everyone was being so kind to each other.
Driving so carefully and so slow.
Never before and never again would I see LA drivers behave in this fashion, unfortunately.
I arrived home, and Mountain Man and I sat glued to the events unfolding on the TV.
I went back to work two days later, when they opened the office towers that I worked in again. I remember quite clearly the difference in arriving at my office this time.
There were hordes of security guards.
Everyone’s bags were checked. You had to say who you were, where you worked, and then they checked the list to make sure you were legit.
Our building was built by the same architect that designed the twin towers in New York. Very eerie for me. Especially being 8 months pregnant. I was a little freaked out going up to my 10th floor office for the next few weeks.
But, I managed to push through.
Those are my memories. I will never forget that day.