I think that the common line I hear about the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001 is "I remember where I was."  I think that on that morning, time stopped for a brief moment as the nation learned of what was happening and then hearts raced for hours as many were glued to the media for any possible update on what was happening.  Tim was in South Dakota.  His brother was also traveling for work.  I was just loading up the last of our things in the van to prepare for a trip across the state for myself, the dog and two little boys.  We had been at my parents for a longer stay while Tim was out of town.  I was 7 months pregnant with Jonathan, and as we were hustling around that morning, with the news on in the background, coverage of the first plane hitting the twin towers was coming on.  I remember watching the second plane fly into the towers on live coverage.  The entire drive home was filled with anxiety and wonder.  I was worried that Tim and his brother wouldn't be able to get home.  I began praying, and then as I listened to more news became scared and prayed some seems like that was the cycle for over 400 miles.  Tim and his brother did make it home safely, and the many days to follow were full of continued media coverage of all three attacks.

Sunday, we commemorated 10 years since that tragic day.  While I had no personal ties to those lives that were lost ten years ago, or even to the rescue personel that bravely and diligently worked and put their own lives in danger, the memories and the empathy I have are very real.  I'm proud to be an American and I hope that we as a nation don't ever forget the events of 9/11/01 that threatened to take away all that we are fortuneate enough to enjoy or the sacrifices made by our military men and women since then to continue to protect our freedom.  I am a mother...a wife...a daughter...a sister, and I don't have words enough to express my gratitude that I can still celebrate those relationships with my family members because another woman or man has sacrificed those same relationships. 

One of Jakob's former classmates and the daughter of a friend beautifully sang the Star Spangled Banner.
At a memorial service dedicated to remembering those events and lives lost, and thanking those who have and continue to sacrifice, we listened to personal local testimonies of those who were directly affected by the attacks.  They were heart-wrenching, and I was reminded again of all that I have to be thankful for.  We prayed for the military families and the families still grieving the loss of a loved one.  We recognized the bravery of those involved in the rescue and recovery missions and the passengers on flight 93.  We honored our country with patriotic music, the pledge of allegience (in its entirety) and the flying of the American flag. 

Much may have happened in the last ten years, but patriotism is still alive.    It is my hope that our children will know the meaning of the Red, White and Blue that flies, what our country was founded on and the price of our freedom. 

I found it fitting that as we went about our normally scheduled day of church and ballgames, beyond a designated memorial, that our children recognized that we continued to remember.  The Firefighters played the Police and before the game, observed a moment of silence.  It was beautiful.