I got him to school and walked in and told the secretary something crazy was going on and she needed to find a radio. I explained what we had heard on the radio. At that moment all of her phone lines started ringing with concerned parents. I hugged Phil good bye and said I would see him after school. I remember calling Scott on my way home and telling him he needed to find a way to get some news. This was 9 years ago before constant, instantious internet news coverage.
I went home and turned on the TV. My sister called (or maybe I called her) we sat watching the TV trying to figure out what was going on. We were 60 miles away from each other and it was one time in our life that I truly felt close to her. Our parents were on the way to DC on vacation. They were driving. My cell rang and it was mom. Amie called Dad on her cell. One most of my vivid memories is my sister yelling "OH MY GOD it is going down" as the first building fell. We watched in horror connected by that phone at what was happening before eyes. We begged them to come home. Finally they realized this was major. They were driving and only had our accounts and the radio to go by. They did turn around and head for KC.
The other day I was talking to Phil about what he remembered. He recounted what happened as the school day continued. I remember fighting the urge to go get him and bring him home (that safe haven every parent feels about their house for their child). As Phil and I talked the other day it hit me. For his generation, this is the first "I remember where I was when...." they will have. He was the about the same age I was when I had my first one of those moments,John Lennon being shot. Somehow, now that memory doesn't compare to his first of those memories.
I remember that day, 9 years ago wondering about the world my child was growing up in. 9 months later we adopted Andrew. He doesn't remember a world where you don't have to take your shoes off at the airport, or packing all your liquids in your checked bags. This is the first year I have exposed him to what happened that day. I wanted him to maintain his belief that the world is inherently good as long as possible.
I pray for Phil, his generation has VERY few of the "I remember where I was..." moments. I hope for all of us there is never another day that causes such fear. But like my friend Allan said... If you give into the fear, you let them win.