I wrote this last year:  9/11, Never Forget

To all the people who died in New York, Pennsylvania and Washington D.C., I remember.

This year marks 15 years since the events on 9/11 unfolded in real-time in the American media and changed our view of the world forever.  Seeing the events unfold on documentaries, I’m still hit with the same raw emotion I felt on the day it actually happened.  I’ve consistently not liked this day since this happened, and it being a Sunday today, leaves me without the distraction of being at work.  The vivid detail I can recall is unsettling, which is something we can all do that lived through these events.

I’ve received some negativity from family and friends on this, however I have allowed my daughter to watch several of the documentaries including “102 Minutes That Changed the World” because I want her to understand the true gravity of the actions that took place.  I want her to understand why it was such a pivotal point in our history.  She asked a lot of questions to better understand what happened and I’m happy she did so that she understands everything they’re not going to show or talk about in school.  I don’t believe in shielding our children completely when there is a life lesson to learn, within certain limits of course.  Some things are better left to when she is older.

Life is raw, graphic, and tragic at times.  I would much rather my daughter have the foreknowledge and tools to handle life in her own way from me.  As her parent, it is my responsibility to pass onto her all the wisdom, knowledge, and experience I have had so that she can be the best person she is able to be.  I’ve adopted this approach, not because I want to be harsh, but because I want to be honest.  I want to be the person that she knows she can reach out to in times of trouble and confusion and know that nothing I say will be anything but truthful (to the best of my ability).  My extended family and friends don’t have that responsibility to her and do not have a right to express their negative opinion in how I choose to raise her.

I have purchased tickets from the local fire company for a day trip to New York scheduled for November 12th to visit the 9/11 Memorial and Museum for the family.  I’m already anxious for the trip in regards to my reaction to the physical location of the tragedy as I have not been to lower Manhattan since before 9/11 over 15 years ago.  Watching it online and seeing pictures of the progress pales in comparison to being there in person.  At some point in the coming year, I will be visiting the memorials in Washington D.C. and Shanksville, PA.  It is my responsibility to remember all the people that died on this tragic day for the rest of my life.  It is my responsibility to ensure that my daughter understands the true scope of this tragedy with the hope that it will never happen again in her lifetime.