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It's a day of reflection, mostly. I think about the victims of the attack, the families of the people who died in the attack, the survivors of the attack, and all the soldiers, from around the world, not just America, who have been fighting, and sometimes died, ever since the attack, to prevent this kind of thing from ever happening again. I think about where I was when it happened, and what impact it has had on America, and the rest of the world.

I don't remember much from 9/11, or even before 9/11, because I was only a 10/11 year old girl when the attack happened. 9/11 was the first big news event I remember hearing about, but I was so young, that I didn't really understand what it was about. I grew up in a post-9/11 world, so I only remember the day through child-eyes. It was only years later that I actually began to think about it, and understand what happened on that day.

This is what I remember from that day:

It was around afternoon here, because of the time differences between Denmark and America, and I was playing with a friend. After my friend went home, I went into the living room, and saw my parents watching the news, where the images of the twin towers burning caught my eyes. I thought it looked like a movie, so I asked what it was. My mother told me that some really bad people had attacked some famous buildings in America, and killed a lot of people. I also remember seeing the buildings crumple, and being a little bit afraid, but the rest of the day is a blur. Next day in school, we talked about the attacks, and held 5 minutes silence for all the victims. I remember asking, angry and disgusted, "But if these people wanted to kill themselves, why did they have to take so many innocent people with them?!" because I was too young, and too innocent,  to understand the horrible fact, that goal wasn't to commit suicide, but to cause pain and hurt to others. It was only years later that I found out that this was the case. I also remember days after the attack, seeing pictures of people falling from the towers in the magazines, and being shocked. It still haunts me.

Date: 2010-09-11 12:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] queer-theory.livejournal.com
It was really interesting to read this. I was 19 when it happened, so I've wondered what it would have been like for someone younger, someone who would ultimately grow-up post-9/11.

Date: 2010-09-11 12:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] iamashamed.livejournal.com
wow, you were on my age, that's so weird to think about O_o. Yeah, it's weird, it's like I reacted years later, when I realized what it was. Like, it broke my heart, and made me sad, which it hadn't really done before, because I was too young. I also remember growing up with all these references to that day, and I never really noticed what changed after the attack.

Date: 2010-09-11 12:23 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] queer-theory.livejournal.com
In my town, the change was immediate and obvious. I lived next to a major military base. Everything was locked down. People I would have normally seen that day weren't allowed to come into town. I had two classes that day and I remember my art teacher walking in, writing on the board "Tell me how you feel and then you can go," and then sitting down with his head in his hands. Most of the class was missing. The rest of us drew or wrote or just left because we felt nothing.

The other class I was taking was Comparative Religion. We had been leading up to studying Judaism before 9/11, but we ended up spending the next month going round and round about Islam and extremists.

There were a couple of people from my town that died, either in the towers or on one of the planes. There were vigils. A local highway was renamed. And in the years that followed, people I went to school with went off to Iraq and Afghanistan.

I'm happy that I was aware of the differences though. I think as a child, I wouldn't have understood and that would have made me very afraid.
Edited Date: 2010-09-11 12:23 pm (UTC)

Date: 2010-09-11 12:27 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] iamashamed.livejournal.com
wow, holy crap. That's scary. I can't even imagine that.

Date: 2010-09-11 12:30 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] queer-theory.livejournal.com
At the time, it wasn't exactly scary. It was mostly... I don't know. I felt numb. I think that's how a lot of people felt.

I didn't really feel anything beyond that numbness until years later, when my high school science teacher's son died in Iraq.

Date: 2010-09-11 12:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] iamashamed.livejournal.com
Yeah, that's a natural reaction I think. Oh my God, I'm sorry.

Date: 2010-09-11 12:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] queer-theory.livejournal.com
My experience was nothing compared to what many other people went through. I think I had what was probably a typical reaction and experience for a lot of Americans who didn't live in New York or personally know anyone involved.

I read the accounts of what happened from people like Neil DeGrasse Tyson and John Hodgman, and just can't imagine what that must have been like.

Date: 2010-09-11 12:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] iamashamed.livejournal.com
Yeah, I've read a lot of accounts as well, and I can't even process it.

Date: 2010-09-11 12:55 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] trustingno1.livejournal.com
I was thinking about this before, about how I can't really separate out "pre-9/11" and "post-9/11", because I was only 12 when it happened, so post is all I really know. I remember that when I asked my parents why it'd happened, they couldn't answer.

Date: 2010-09-11 01:02 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] iamashamed.livejournal.com
That's basically me, hah. It's so weird, isn't it. To have these few memories of it, but not remembering what really changed.

Date: 2010-09-11 01:50 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sloppycronkite.livejournal.com
My experience was pretty similar. I was eight at the time ... I remember we had some family over, and my aunt had been playing some board game with me. It was pretty late. Someone turned on the TV, and then I saw the footage of the buildings burning.

I was confused and a little scared, and everyone in the room had gone silent. I remember that I was really tired (like on the brink of sleep) and that I'd heard the words "America" and "attack". I'm pretty sure I fell asleep on the couch as people were watching, and I remember waking later up for a couple of seconds and realizing that my Dad was carrying me to my bedroom.

Date: 2010-09-11 01:55 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] queer-theory.livejournal.com
Butting in for a random thought: What I'm learning from the replies in this post is that everyone I know is younger than me. :P

Date: 2010-09-11 01:59 pm (UTC)

Date: 2010-09-11 02:18 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sloppycronkite.livejournal.com
Don't think of us as young; think of us as unwise to the ways of the world. :P

Date: 2010-09-11 02:22 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] queer-theory.livejournal.com
I would never think of you as unwise to the ways of the world. You are all very mature.

Date: 2010-09-11 02:24 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] iamashamed.livejournal.com
I agree with this.

Date: 2010-09-11 09:44 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pyroclasticgrub.livejournal.com
Not me...I was 20 when it happened! :)

Date: 2010-09-11 09:46 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] queer-theory.livejournal.com
Cool, though I don't know you. ;)

Date: 2010-09-11 09:54 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pyroclasticgrub.livejournal.com
Oops, sorry I didn't read your post as clearly as I should have. Forgive me, I'm getting old.

Date: 2010-09-11 10:00 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] queer-theory.livejournal.com
I totally understand. I've been misreading the television listings all day. :P

Date: 2010-09-11 01:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] iamashamed.livejournal.com
It's so weird, being so young and not remembering a lot, when a lot of people remember it clearly. It's only years after that you actually react to it. I remember reading up on it, and watching clips on youtube. That was scary.

Date: 2010-09-11 02:42 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] alivemagdolene.livejournal.com
You sound a hell of a lot more "with it" than I was as a kid (or shit, as a teen). I didn't grasp the concept of mass grief until I was an adult.

Edited for icon I wanted to use. Yeah, I'm persnickety like that.
Edited Date: 2010-09-11 02:42 pm (UTC)

Date: 2010-09-11 03:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] iamashamed.livejournal.com
idk about that, I didn't think a lot about it until years later. I remember the day and all, but I don't remember a lot my feelings, except the ones I expressed in that class-room. It's weird.

hehehe, I do that too:)

Date: 2010-09-11 03:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mcollinknight.livejournal.com
I have almost the same story as you - I was in Grade 6, so I would have been about 11 as well - our teacher tried to explain it to us, but we didn't know what the WTC was ("is it, like, a mall?" "it's not the white house, right?") - and a lot of our classes combined so the teachers could go watch the news in the library.

I came home and my mom was watching the news, had seen the second tower collapse, and you're right - I didn't know what it meant, but it made me afraid. I remember my parents telling me the US was going to war, and that freaked me right the hell out - my dad was trying to make spaghetti and I just kept asking him questions: "wait so are people going to be fighting here? how many people are they trying to kill?" I think it alarmed me because Canada is right beside the US, and I didn't see how them going to war wouldn't somehow lead to there being war where I lived. (This is also around the time I told my dad I liked Al Gore because his named seemed friendlier.)

It's weird, because even though what it meant to me at the time is very fuzzy, I react very strongly to it now - I can't see real 9/11 footage without crying. I guess you never really know how something is going to affect you, and it probably means a lot of things to people that they don't even realize; I'm not from NYC, but the society that was attacked was close enough (geographically and socially) to mine that I felt attacked as well? IDK.

And oh - the pictures of the people falling. That was one of the things that shocked me the most. I remember that as well, so haunting.

Date: 2010-09-11 03:29 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] iamashamed.livejournal.com
I didn't know what the WTC was either, it was the first time I heard of them.

Aww, that must have been scary.

Me too, actually. I've tried watching videos, and they break my heart, and I often cry. And then I feel guilty about crying, because it's not even in my country, and I don't know anyone impacted by it. I've been traumatized seeing videos of it on youtube, that I wish I'd never seen.

Date: 2010-09-11 03:50 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] mcollinknight.livejournal.com
I know that feeling; I often feel guilty because I experience a lot of grief re: 9/11 and Remembrance Day when I sometimes don't think I have as strong a claim to it as others, but you don't have to feel guilty - no apology needs to be given for empathy. You feel what you feel <3

Date: 2010-09-11 03:52 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] iamashamed.livejournal.com
exactly. Thanks bb<3

Date: 2010-09-11 05:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] novemberangel28.livejournal.com
I wasn't even five when it happened, and I didn't start taking it seriously until I was about 10. I wish I had >:/ But yeah, this is pretty much how I feel as well.

Date: 2010-09-11 09:49 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] pyroclasticgrub.livejournal.com
I remember the day very vividly. I was almost 20, and I was in seond year Uni at the University of Winnipeg.

I was sleeping at my then-boyfriend's place and he woke up at around 7am and turned the radio on CBC and I could hear the presenter talking about how a plane has flown into the towers and I thought I was dreaming it.

As I was slowly waking up, I realized it wasn't a dream, so I put on some clothes and went out into the common area of his flat where everyone was huddled around the TV watching the news.

Later on, we went to the Uni, and all of the students were huddled around TVs that the students union has set up in common areas and people were crying. The rest of the day was a blur, and I had no idea that it would change us forever.

So yes, I do remember a pre-911 world.
Edited Date: 2010-09-11 09:53 pm (UTC)

Date: 2010-09-12 02:32 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] paperdays.livejournal.com
I was nine. I live SO far away from anything that would ever be a terrorist target, and I was so young, so I didn't really feel an impact from it. I understood what happened, didn't understand why (though I don't even know if anybody does) and certainly didn't understand the mass grief. I knew people died, and people were injured, but they were ... it's so hard to describe. The death of a person didn't hold much weight with me, because it was a faceless nameless person. It didn't affect my daily life and I didn't lose anybody, I don't know anybody who lost anybody, etc. So it felt real in the sense that I knew what happened, but it didn't feel REAL the way it did to adults.

I also didn't grow up with a TV, so I didn't see the video of the towers falling over and over and over. We had a weekly newsletter for kids and I was bothered that it didn't cover the attacks until two weeks later. Obviously it couldn't cover it that week, but it didn't cover it the following week either.... Honestly they'd probably already gone to print so that they could get them shipped out and have them arrive on time, but I wouldn't have thought of that at the time. I kind of remember the photo that they used in the newsletter, of people running away from the towers. But by that point, two weeks later, I had heard so much news coverage that I couldn't really take the little newspaper (maybe a Scholastic production?) seriously. I don't feel that 9/11 affected me hugely, at least not directly. It hard a large effect on the greater world around me, and it certainly had a long-term effect, so it affected me indirectly, I guess. It didn't really change anything locally, except for politics. Nothing tangible.


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