Memoir of A 9/11 Born Child

Memoir of A 9/11 Born Child

A Story by Avatarfanx2
"

A memoir-ish thing I've written in remembrance of the baneful attacks of September 11, 2001. Based on a true story.

"

“Hi Mom!” I greeted cheerfully as I entered the kitchen 6:00 a.m. on September 11, 2001. Today was my seventh birthday and my first one outside of India. We had just moved to the USA just seven months earlier and we were just getting used to the new way of life and culture clash.


“Hi Beta!” My mom said with a smile and handed my lunch and lead me out the door to catch my school bus. Of course, my innocence of the world around me would be shattered that day.


As I waved to my mother from the inside of bus, I happily went over in my head what I would do in my first grade class today, looking forward to the daily warm-ups, the handwriting exercises, and the addition problems for math.


A half an hour later, the bus stopped in front of the school and I happily ran to my classroom and greeted the teacher. As usual, I was the first student in. After leaving my backpack in the back of the room by the pegs and grabbing all that I needed for the day, I sat down at my desk and began to neatly organize the items I would need for the day.


By 6:45, the rest of the students in my class had all come in and taken their seats to get ready for the day. By the time Mrs. Brooks, my teacher, had finished taking attendance and the announcements had finished, I had already completed all of the assignments on the boards and the Mrs. Brooks assigned me some more Math problems to do.


And so the day passed, doing normal first grade curriculum without any conception of what the world outside my house and my school was like. My ignorance was bliss.


Then, at 8:45, my teacher got a call from the office.


“Excuse me for a minute,” she said with a smile before she went to pick up the call.


Most of the class was talked while she was on the phone but I doodled. After drawing what I thought was a decent star, I looked up, bored, to see if Mrs. Brooks was off the phone yet.


Instead of seeing her back in the front of the room readying our science lesson for the day, I saw a look of horror and grief on her pale features. Of course, back then, I had no idea what any of this meant, but I was puzzled by what could have shocked my teacher who always seemed so patient and composed.


After a few more minutes on the phone, my teacher returned to the class with a worried expression on her face.


As soon and she had opened her mouth to speak, the phone rang again.


She picked it up and with a few words, put it back down again.


“Alex,” she announced and the kid sitting in the desk across from me looked up at Mrs. Brooks puzzled, “You get to leave home early! Your mom is here to pick you up!” She tried to sound happy but none of us missed the worry that outlined her face.


Confused, Alex got up and prepared his things to go home, picking up his backpack at the back of the room. As soon as he got his backpack ready and zipped up, Mrs. Brooks lead him out of the door and into the hallway outside and gave him directions - once again - to the office.


As soon as Alex left, Mrs. Brooks picked up the phone again after it rang three times. This time, Kayla’s dad had come to pick her up.


Then Zack’s uncle picked him up. Next, Jimmy left. After him, Nick. After him, Kelly.


This went on for ten minutes or so until there were three kids left in the class:  Sara, James, and me.


The phone rang again and Mrs. Brooks once again picked it up. “OK,” she said as she put the phone down after her brief conversation.


“Vik,” she said, looking straight at me, “Your dad is here to pick you up.”


I was puzzled. I was never allowed to go home early unless I was sick!


I quietly packed my stuff and after saying bye to the remaining people, I left for the office.


When I entered, my dad was there with a serious expression on his face like the one time that I had brought home a failed math test from school last year back in India. Immediately, I became scared. I think my father saw how frightened I was of him and his look softened. Then, he put a hand on my shoulder and led me out.


We went to his car and he opened the back door for me. I scrambled into the car and he got in the front.


On the fifteen minutes drive home, I tried to ask my dad what was wrong but he just asked me to wait until we got home.


I remained quiet for the rest of the drive.


As soon as my dad pulled in the driveway, I got out of the car and entered in the house.


My mother, who was on the couch with my thirteen-month old baby brother on her lap, let out an obvious sigh of relief as soon as she saw me. Gently putting my sleeping brother down, she came over and hugged me, letting a few tears flow.


I didn’t know how to react.


Then I saw the TV…


CNN was on and they were showing a live broadcast of New York City with two of the skyscrapers flaming.



To say that I was shocked is an understatement. At first I didn’t understand what was going on. So, I asked my dad, “Daddy, why are the building on fire?” pointing to the screen and looking at him with my own shock most likely evident on my face.


My father just looked at me sadly and replied in Telugu, “Son, America was attacked today. Terrorists killed a lot of people today.”


I could not comprehend what he said, but I knew one thing:  America, the nation that was always thought of by Indians as invincible and impenetrable, was now just as safe as weakling India.


That whole day as I waited for my family friends to come over for my birthday. But I knew in the back of my mind, today was no longer my birthday:  the day I turned seven, it would from now on be known as the day that the America braced itself against terrorism. My birthday would no longer be celebrated.


From now on, until the end of my days, the world would not celebrate my birthday, instead they would mourn all those who died in the attacks in New York City.


Thanks Terrorists, I thought to myself bitterly, Thanks for not only destroying my birthday, but also the lives of thousands of people.


By the time 6:00 had rolled around, two families had come. Thankfully we only planned for three families total, including ourselves.


Half-heartedly, my parents brought out the cake and everyone wished me and sang.


I thought to myself wryly, Thanks again Terrorists. Thanks a lot!

Of course, as years would go on, I would find out more and more details of what actually happened during those baneful attacks.


Planes had been hijacked and flown into the twin towers, South-Central Pennsylvania, and the Pentagon.


However, this knowledge didn’t make it any easier to deal with the fact that the one day of my life where I could just celebrate myself had been stolen.


A part of me had died on September 11, 2001, and every year, another part dies on this date.


Yet, I realized that I shouldn’t because this happened on my birthday. I realized that I was fortunate enough to be alive. I immediately felt sorry for the near-3,000 people who lost their lives during those unfortunate events.


My heart became unbearably heavy when I realized that these people would no longer be able to wake up to hear the birds sing, or listen to their children’s squeals of joy when they came home from work every day.


Those innocent people who had done no wrong whatsoever in their life against those who killed them…


No one deserved that fate! To die at another’s hand when you hadn’t even lifted a finger against the latter…


As the years went on, I began to understand and I began to grieve more and more for all those that lost their lives on 9/11/2001.


To this day, there has been no 9/11 where I haven’t cried myself to sleep or screamed out of anguish for all that those innocent people had to go through on the date of my birth.


Their lives were not supposed to end like that! They too were human beings!


What has been accomplished? What did we gain?


Only the wastage of human life…


I only have one request for all those out there! Please remember! Never forget!


Do not let that waste of human life be forgotten, that is the last that we as fellow human beings can do…

© 2010 Avatarfanx2


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Author's Note

Avatarfanx2
Based on a real story.

Please ignore the grammar, mechanics, style, spelling mistakes...

It's weak and I know it.

This is mainly in memory of those who all died.

Also, I wrote this to help me with some personal problems.

Anyway, thanks for reading and please leave a review!

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Featured Review

Okay, I can't fathom why you don't have reviews on this! This is so emotional, so innocent, so touching.
There are the usual errors, of course, style, grammar, and you should go through them.
But this is a memoir of epic proportions. Though really, enjoy your upcoming birthdays. I'm sure those born on Dec. 7th (Pearl Harbor) celebrate their birthdays also, and there's no reason not to celebrate the fact that you have made it another year.

Posted 9 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.




Reviews

Okay, I can't fathom why you don't have reviews on this! This is so emotional, so innocent, so touching.
There are the usual errors, of course, style, grammar, and you should go through them.
But this is a memoir of epic proportions. Though really, enjoy your upcoming birthdays. I'm sure those born on Dec. 7th (Pearl Harbor) celebrate their birthdays also, and there's no reason not to celebrate the fact that you have made it another year.

Posted 9 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


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Added on September 11, 2010
Last Updated on September 11, 2010
Tags: Memoir, Birthday, 9/11, September 11, true story, child, memories, 2001

Author

Avatarfanx2
Avatarfanx2

Monroeville, PA



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Hey, I'm a sarcastic person who has a bad and unusual sense of humor. I love reading and writing, two of my favorite hobbies. more..

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