terror

Standing in the living room of my one-bedroom condo, staring at the TV. Watching as a second plane exploded on impact, crumpling into a skyscraper. Unable to comprehend what I was seeing.

Had the news on every morning as I got ready for work. Figured a 5th grade teacher should know what's going on in the world before greeting his class.

Eyes burning with tears at those extinguished lives. No idea how I would be able to stand in front of my students. What could I possibly say to them?

Calling my parents with the "Are you seeing this?" so many of us asked each other that day. Breaking down on the phone, overwhelmed by the loss of life—so many souls hijacked.

Somehow made it to school, met with coworkers and administration before students arrived. The plan: comfort the children, answer their questions, allay their fears.

It's been said the only way to remove prayer from schools is to eliminate tests. We prayed that day—a lot. I'm sure teachers and students all across the country and around the world did the same.

Ten years have passed, yet we're still living in terror. Anytime anything goes wrong on a massive scale in America, we immediately think back to 9/11.

This past Thursday, all of San Diego county lost power. Estimates ranged from 4 to 5 million people without electricity. Was it a terrorist act? No. Some idiot in Yuma screwed up the grid.

But driving home, seeing the stoplights go dark, hearing static as every preset station on my radio cut out, I immediately thought: "This is it. They've got us now."

It's been ten years. We can't live like this anymore. We have to let go of the fear. If we don't, the 9/11 mass-murderers have ultimately won.