Monday, September 12, 2011

"102 Minutes That Changed America"

Today I woke up thinking about how I think that over the last 10 years I have forgotten the emotions I felt as I watched the 2nd plane collide with the 2nd tower. I remember that in that instant I, and I think everyone, realized that this was far more than just an accident.

Jake was 1. I remember feeling a lot of fear. Even all the way in Utah. I wondered what more would come. Is this the beginning of something so big and life changing? How would I protect my family? My little boy?

Today several channels showed a documentary. It is called "102 Minutes That Changed America". It started at exactly the time of the first plane hitting the first tower. It lasted 102 minutes, which was the length of time before both buildings had fallen. The entire thing is a compilation of "home video". Footage taken by people watching from their windows, on the street nearby and even people inside of the WTC! No narration, other than their voices and the comments of the stunned and frightened people on the streets. No media drama, or producers perspective, just raw footage and dispatch recordings.


Ryan & I watched. Jake watched it with us. Mallory played in the other room. Jake had been learning about this whole thing in school. I could sense his disconnect from how real this really was. I saw the warnings of the graphic nature and I decided it was good for him. And it was!

Our hearts broke as we watched the people jumping from the windows, choosing their way to die, knowing the other option, because they were seeing it all around them. The footage from inside the tower is what really got me. It was smokey and crowded. People were crying and screaming, hurrying to find their way out. I'm sure sprinklers were on inside the building, and then there were the constant alarms going off. So loud you can't hear yourself think. Not stopping. Dispatch telling you to stay where you are...because they honestly don't know what else to tell you. Fear telling you to get out. What heartbreaking chaos!

When the buildings came down, the dust cloud was shocking. People with cameras overtaken by the dust cloud, surely not expecting to be engulfed in complete blackness. For how long, I wonder. The air around them was so thick you could hear them hacking and coughing. They said it was impossible to breathe in.

Seeing the ground covered with a thick layer of office papers, dust, debri, ash....what was it like to begin the clean up process on that? How did they do it?!

It is no wonder to me that our Country seemed to incredibly united, immediately after this. People flocked to church. They were afraid and faith was not only kindled, it felt necessary for survival!

How quickly we forget.

After watching this we had a pretty good talk about the one constant in all of that fear. We talked with the kids about how no matter what happens in their lives, even experiences where they are afraid and separated from us, we MUST remember that God is constantly aware of us and we must pray and cling to faith. Having lost Dawson, I think we all feel such a strong connection to the other side of the veil. We KNOW this life is temporary. It was from the beginning and is now. When, where & how this portion of our existence will end, we don't know. However, we talked about how whatever we face, we know what waits for us, and that is all we need to give us the strength to endure anything.

Today my heart and mind was on those that lost family on that tragic day. Their worry for the fear their loved one felt must just break their hearts. I wonder, do they know they can be with them forever?! I can imagine the sort of comfort that would bring to their souls, because we know what it does for ours to know that we will be with Dawson again!  If they only could learn that their loved ones still live. They learn, or teach, and they wait for their loved ones, so they can teach them what they now know. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is vital to every single one of us!

Today I am more grateful for the Country we live in! I am more grateful for those who voluntarily leave family and loved ones to selflessly serve our Country and people all over this world, in fighting for freedom. This war began nearly 10 years ago. It is crazy that it is a war, not fought for the boundaries or gain of a Country, but for a corrupt and evil idea! An idea! That is what spurred the terrorists into action. They give their lives for a mans idea. It is so sad that so many must pay the price of the wicked designs of the adversary! I'm grateful that their are people in our Country that have a true vision of freedom as a human right and a gratitude so at the core of who they are that they willingly give up so much, even their lives, to bring or preserve it for others. I'm SO grateful that today I feel more of an appreciation for them...and for our great Country!

I also have to add that I am in awe by the Firefighters and other emergency workers in New York....and everywhere! Listening to the dispatcher read off an endless list of firetrucks, with off duty firemen, responding to the scene, was absolutely amazing. The people that worked in these buildings went in that morning without understanding the dangers that would come. On the other hand, these Firemen knew exactly what they were walking in to, and they did it heroically. So many gave their lives, trying to save others. Listening to their voices call back their progress to their Chief, and watching them scramble to save as many as they was amazing! I used to be an EMT. It was totally my favorite job! I still crave it every time I smell a diesel engine. I can smell the Ambulance and I want to get in and go. For me, there was nothing like having the knowledge needed to get someone the help they needed when they were hurt or afraid. It was downright scary sometimes, to have a life depending on your teams ability to do the right thing, but it gave me a greater appreciation for those that do it full time and devote their lives to it. They do it because of their passion for helping people. They put their lives at risk everyday to perhaps save someone else's. It is really quite amazing!

I don't know if you are interested or not. Perhaps you don't have the time right now. Click on the title of this post, it will bring up its own page. Book mark this page. Then come back when you have time and watch this video. It is the full documentary that we watched today. It will change your perspective. It is SO well worth the watch, if you can!

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