A marking point. A defining line. A place where you can distinguish between the two halves of your life. Before and After. BCE and AD. For my grandparents, that date is December 7, 1941, the day that Pearl Harbor was attacked. For my parents, it is November 22, 1963, the day that President Kennedy was assassinated.
I always wondered what my date would be. What day would stand out where I could clearly point to it and say, here, here is where my life was changed? As I grew older, I thought, maybe my generation won't have such a day. Could we be that lucky? (Of course, this is a very American-centric view of the world, there are dozens of dates to pull that are significant to peoples around the world.)
Well, we have a day, a defining line, a moment in time that is ours. September 11, 2001 is that day. The day that the world changed. How trite that sounds, but how true. I don't think I ever understood before that day how my grandparents or parents felt on their days. You can sympathize, but you don't really understand, can't empathize. I guess it's one of those things where you really do have to be there.
Time marches on. Time doesn't heal all wounds, but time blurs memories, makes them hazy, and you start seeing that day through a mist. Our children's generation will not know how our country came together on September 12th. They will know the stories, but not feel it in their hearts. Our grandchildren will learn about it in school, and just file that date away in preparation for a history exam.
We say that we should never forget, but how can we ever remember?
Today, in order to commemorate September 11th, Bridges is running their first 100 Words Project. Please stop by to read others' memories of our generation's defining moment.