When I was told of the 9/11 attacks after a normal day in elementary school, I honestly thought nothing of it. Our school hadn’t said a thing to the kids on that day and I considered what my friend was telling me a weird joke with no punch line. My feelings heightened immensely when I made it home that day to my mother crying on the couch. I still cannot accurately describe my feelings about that day. It was almost as if the media told me all the things I should be questioning and when it was appropriate to be happy/sad. It also gave me a feeling of unity. Never have I felt as close to my country as those following months. From sea to shining sea we were a united people against a common enemy. We were not just Texans or Oklahomans, we were Americans.

After a week or so I recall my school life slipping back in to a shockingly normal routine. How long was long enough to mourn? How long until we were all expected to carry on with life? Our world was moving at such a high rate that we just couldn’t take the time to stop. We had to take the complex array of emotions created by this disaster and basically repress them in order to keep ourselves sane. 10 years later we’re still mourning a tragedy that shook an entire country. The article I read on the anniversary of 9/11 makes the important point that our country should not just dwell in the past on this subject but look towards the future. Striving to improve this country is the true way to honor the heroes and victims who lost their lives. No amount of memorials or mourning will change the event, but what we do with our vast array of powerful emotions is what will define us as a people. I am still proud to live in the land of the free and home of the brave and no tragedy will bring me down.