Remembering 9/11 – I’ll Never Forget

I don’t live in New York City and didn’t know anyone personally in NYC who lived through the tragedy of 9/11. But, it is a tragedy that had a personal impact on my life and on the lives of my family. September 11, 2001 is a date Americans will never forget.

Where do I begin to share how 9/11 impacted my life – I guess at the beginning. The summer of 2001 was a busy summer for my family. We had decided to sell our homes in the Midwest and head to sunny Arizona – three elderly relatives, my husband recovering from a very difficult hip surgery and me.

Mom and I flew to Arizona on September 7, 2001 to get dad’s new “home” at the Alzheimer’s facility ready with a bed, furniture, pictures of the family and other personal things that would hopefully bring him security and comfort.

On September 10 dad flew to Arizona on a major air carrier accompanied by a private nurse. Dad had never flown before and the medical personnel at his current Alzheimer’s facility thought it would be better for him to fly without the distraction of family. At the departure airport security would not allow his nurse to carry on his medication. Dad was flying for four plus hours without his Alzheimer’s medication – if anyone has dealt with Alzheimer’s you know that not having medication could have proven to be a major challenge.

Dad landed safely and we got him settled into his new “home.” Mom was emotionally exhausted – this was her husband of over fifty years and she was feeling helpless and lonesome. Dad was confused. I was drained but knew everyone was safe and sound. The next morning mom and I awoke to the sights and sounds of the World Trade Center collapsing. It was surreal and unbelievable. As our transportation system shut down I remember how eerily quiet it was when we stepped outside. No sounds of planes or trains and very little auto or truck traffic on the highways.

Then it hit me – oh my gosh! The day before my dad had been flying from the Midwest to Arizona without us and without his medication. Yes, he had a trained nurse and she was familiar to him but she wasn’t his family. What if he had been diverted to a different airport for a day or two or even longer? He wouldn’t have had his medication and we wouldn’t have known where he was or how he was doing. Even now as I’m writing this, I have chills of what might have been.

As I think back, I am so very grateful that things worked out well for my family. We were the fortunate ones and I am thankful for our blessings. My heart goes out to those who lost loved ones and friends on that horrific day – a day that has forever changed all of our lives.


Copyright © 2011 Sharon Michaels – All Rights Reserved

I’m Sharon and my business is dedicated to empowering and coaching women in business.

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