It's funny. I can't remember the events of three days ago with much clarity,
but I can remember 9/11/01 in great detail.
I can't remember all that I ate yesterday,
Yet I remember what I had that morning.
I can't remember exactly who I talked with 2 days ago,
But I can see and hear each and every person from that day.
I remember being with clients- getting ready to teach 2 homeschooled kids their riding lesson for the week. I remember the cup of coffee, with just a dollop of Bailey's in it, that was presented to me as a pre-birthday gift by my student's Mom.
I had exactly three sips of that coffee.
One, in the kitchen, as we gathered up the kids.
The second walking up the drive to the barn to get the horses ready.
The third before I went to help check tack and get the kids ready.
It was the last time I had Bailey's.
And I don't know that I'll ever be able to drink it again.
I remember the horses- an older white-ish/ gray-ish gelding, retired from a dude string, and a mouse brown gelding who was a camp horse for several years. They had a resigned look on their faces, one of "Oh no. Not this AGAIN."
I remember the excitement in the kids faces, the sheer joy of being NEAR a horse.
I remember the feeling of Fall in the air.
I remember, just before we were going to get the kids mounted up, the sound of their Dad's truck screaming up the mountainous driveway. I remember the look on his face.
I remember his words like he said them just now.
"WE ARE UNDER ATTACK!"
The details spilled from him with intensity- and a pit of dread opened in my stomach.
I remember stripping tack from the horses, tossing them into their field, and seeing the family running to their house to gather information and news. The father- a veteran of Desert Storm- looked at me and told me that if this went as bad as he feared it could, for me to get my son and come back to their house- he would protect us.
I remember the truck race down the mountain to the school to get my pre-K aged son- the radio blaring the news, the shock, the feeling of sickness and of not knowing what was coming next.
When I arrived at the school, the faces of those with me reflected the shock and horror, the uncertainty. School closed- parents were swarming in to pick up their kids, buses were being scrambled for the rest. We were only 2 hours from Ground Zero- less as the crow flies. Better to send all kids home, to be with their parents, than leave them in school *just in case*. No one ever finished that *just in case* thought.
I remember getting home, turning on the news, and seeing the first tower collapse.
And then the second.
The people jumping from the base of the sky, falling towards the city streets and certain death below.
I remember with such intensity it hurts at times.
I remember the friends I lost that day.
I remember the 343 brother and sister first responders lost that day.
I remember the police, the port authority, the innocent civilians.
I remember Flight 93, who said NOT ON MY WATCH.
Now, we also have to remember Bengahzi. The four people lost there- and still- no answers.
Have you forgotten them?